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The 12 Best AR Apps for iPhone and iPad

Pokemon Go and the IKEA app not included.

12-Best-iPhone-and-iPad-Apps-That-Are-Changing-the-Way-We-Interact-With-the-World-gear-patrol-full-lead

Apple announced its ARKit developer tool back in June 2017 and since then, and the release of iOS 11, the popularity of iOS apps that take advantage of augmented reality — computer-generated imaged that overlay the real world — has skyrocketed. And it’s far from just gaming apps like Pokemon Go. There are measuring and navigation apps and creative and design apps, as well as apps that deal with shopping and education. And all of them allow you to interact with the world and your iPhone or iPad in a totally different way.

Note: In order to use augmented reality apps, you need to have an iPhone or iPad with an A9 chip or later. And it needs to updated with iOS 11 or later. That means the iPhone 6s and the 2017 iPad are the two oldest devices that can run these apps.

Solidhaus

This app is a 3D visualization tool for architects as it allows them to see their designs in augmented reality. The designs are to scale to, allowing whoever is using the app to walk around or through the AR models to get a better feel of what the place will be like. Solidhaus isn’t available yet, but you can sign up for the Beta. It’s designed to work on both iPhone and iPad Pro.

Sign Up: Beta

AR MeasureKit

Want to know the length or a desk or the height of your friend? Just whip open this app and it’ll measure anything in augmented reality. It’s a fun, quick tool that’s also super convenient. It’s basically like having measuring tape on your person at all times, but it doesn’t take up any space.

Download Now: $5 Visit the Website

World Brush

At its heart, World Brush is a drawing app, but it’s unlike anything you’ve probably tried before. Instead of giving you a white canvas, it gives you the world around you. It allows you to draw anywhere on anything — on buildings, on the ground, in the sky — and then view it in augmented reality. And you’re drawings are permanent (unless you erase or delete them), so you can come back days or weeks later and still see them. And you can even see other people’s drawings, too.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

Morpholio Trace – Sketch CAD

Morpholio Trace is an award-winning app that’s designed for architects by architects. It’s a digital tracing tool that can be like traditional tracing paper, though it’s more versatile than just that. It’s able to help with everything from idea conception to schematic design, illustration to making renderings. It supports AutoCAD. And it has a new “Smart Fill” feature that lets you capture the boundary of a specific area, like drawing a border around Central Park in Apple Maps, and calculate the area’s square footage — it’s something that architects or even casual users can appreciate. (This app is optimized for using the Apple Pencil with iPad or iPad Pro.)

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website Read our Review

Vuforia Chalk

This fantastic app is designed as a customer service tool. It lets people in different locations share the same live view, so expert techicans can walk customers through the issues they are having, like a setting up a computer or a malfunctioning water heater. It’s not as consumer-facing as other AR apps on this app, but is really quite neat.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

JigSpace

I’d call JigSpace an “education” app, but that seems too cookie cutter. Instead, it explains how things work. It could be a battery, lock or a toaster. Even the human ear, eye or brain. The app displays an augemented image and allows you to walk around, look at it from all angles, and then break it down so you can understand how it works.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

Sky Guide AR

Ever wonder what stars in the sky you’re looking at? This app takes care of that. Just open the app and position it at the sky and it’ll show you exactly what you’re looking at. It can also help you located planets and different constellations.

Download Now: $3 Visit the Website

AR Runner

This competitive app makes runners run through specific checkpoints and get the fastest times. When you open the app and select the game mode, you’ll see markers that show you where to go — hit them and try to get the fastest time. The courses can be inside or outside, and allow you to compete with players all over the world.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

Magicplan

This architecture app focuses on floor planning. You can create or edit floor plans by taking a photo of a specific room or area and then see it in 3D. From there, you can design or edit the room, and even furnish the room if you want.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

Waypoint EDU

This is an educational app that makes the player solve scavenger hunts and, in turn, answer quiz questions or learn about different things. It can be played indoors and outdoors, and it’s easy for a parent or teacher to create their own original “Hunts” for kids.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

GeoGebra AR

Doing math is fun, right? Well, this app is designed to make it at least a bit more interesting. It allows students to place 3D graphs and math objects on any flat surface in the real world, and walk around them and take screenshots. The app is far from elementary level, too. Students solving complex equations can see their graphs and objects they’re working on change shape in real-time. It’s really quite a neat education app.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

Houzz

This home improvement app is similar to the IKEA app, as it lets you place furntiture in a room to see how it comes/fits together. It has a large and diverse catalog or furntiture and other design accoutrements, and you can make in-app purchases if you like what you see.

Download Now: Free

Visit the Website

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