It’s possible to view augmented reality images with a smartphone or tablet. Unlike virtual reality it’s not required to use a special VR headset. AR glasses do provide some specific advantages, for instance it’s possible to project the augmented reality images directly in front of your eyes in 3D. Because most people own a smartphone but are not yet willing to purchase AR glasses a temporary solution has been designed: AR Cardboard. On this page we will tell you more about the technology behind AR glasses and how it can be used as an effective marketing instrument.

Augmented Reality defined

With augmented reality a digital image is projected on top of reality. In contrast to virtual reality everything around the user remains visible, there’s a new layer added to the regular view. Because mobile technology advances rapidly it’s possible to place virtual objects in a fixed position in any location. In order to view AR images you require a special set of AR glasses or you can view the images using a smartphone or tablet.

What is AR Cardboard?

In 2014 the Google Cardboard was introduced. This was a simple cardboard holder equipped with two plastic lenses that allows you to transform each smartphone into a VR headset. Because the left and right eye display a slightly shifted image it’s possible to show virtual reality in 3D. An AR Cardboard uses the same basic principle to augmented reality. Google has not released an AR version of their holder, the Dutch company Aryzon entered this upcoming market with a successful Kickstarter campaign and designed a special AR headset that was also affordable.

How does an AR Cardboard work?

The screen in VR glasses block the view completely, therefore you can only see the virtual environment. With augmented reality it’s important the surrounding remains visible. This is made possible by placing the smartphone not in front of the eyes but slightly below them and on an angle. The display on the screen will be reflected onto a transparent panel which gives the illusion of images floating in front of the users’ eyes. This might sound complicated, but for the user it is quite straightforward: Take the construction kit out of the packaging, fold everything together, slide in a smartphone, hold the AR Cardboard in front of your eyes and done!

How can you make a branded cardboard holder?

The first Google Cardboard was made out of plain brown cardboard, it didn’t take long before a new wave of branded Cardboards entered the market that were mainly used for promotional usage. The same seems to happen to the branded AR Cardboard. The costs of creating a printed AR holder is affordable and brings 3D augmented reality to a much larger audience. The cardboard is printed with a design, in full color using a high quality printer or printing press. After folding all the logos and images have to be positioned correctly. Therefore it is of the utmost importance to prepare the design meticulously before printing the Cardboards.

Advantages of a branded AR Cardboard

The are many applications for a branded AR Cardboard. In particular for promotional purposes it’s an affordable product that can be deployed in various ways. Here are some suggestions for using these foldable glasses:

Bring them along for presentations

If your representatives travel from one client to another you can’t just setup a multimedia system in every location. Just take out an AR Cardboard, pop in a smartphone and start the sales pitch. Let your customers keep the Cardboard for later use.

Use them at events

Professional AR headsets are expensive and require maintenance. Just think of the cleaning after each use. Just grab a Cardboard AR kit and let people use their own smartphone. You can for instance use special markers at the event. After the presentation the visitor can keep the Cardboard and spread your brand further.

AR Cardboard branded for remote demonstrations

We’re living in a connected community where distance is no longer a factor thanks to internet technology. If you want to show your prospect an augmented reality demonstration you can send a lightweight kit by mail which the prospective buyer can use at their place of residence. This approach can save a lot of time and money.

Sponsored AR

The pool of potential users is enormous because the user only requires a standard smartphone to view your augmented reality presentation. Hand out branded Cardboards in sponsored events using both the branding of the organization you support and your own logo. This allows you to spread your own brand in a new way with a positive message.

With the largest tech companies in the world  supporting augmented reality any mobile device has become a possible AR headset. Take advantage of this opportunity and provide your potential customers with branded AR Cardboards for increased visibility of your brand.