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The AR Revolution: What B&T’s Latest Magazine Cover Is All About

The AR Revolution: What B&T’s Latest Magazine Cover Is All About

If you’re one of our loyal B&T magazine subscribers, you might have recently seen our very colourful Summer 2019 edition (if you’re not subscribed, you can do so here).

You may, therefore, be wondering what on earth the front cover is all about.

The cover is essentially a game. Simply scan the QR code with your smartphone to unlock the ball throwing augmented reality (AR) bonanza.

The best part? We’ll be handing out a special B&T prize to the winner (you can see all the top scores on the leaderboard).

Although it’s all a bit of fun, there is a serious point we’re trying to make with this WebAR-powered cover.

The average attention span is now at just eight seconds

… and on the decline.

This means brands and advertisers now need to think about getting their message across in a limited amount of time. But it also means they need to rethink how they are connecting with customers.

Labelled ‘the experience economy’, brands are looking for ways to engage directly with consumers in a bid to form meaningful relationships.

A perfect solution for the current market is therefore augmented reality (AR), a way for brands to craft an immersive and highly creative brand at scale.

An AR campaign has an average dwell time of 75 seconds – that is 2.5 times the average of radio or TV.

And while the commercial upside of such a technology is abundantly clear, in some cases, it can be difficult for brands to get the technology off the ground for a campaign.

There are different types of AR, but WebAR and app-based AR exist as two viable options for brands looking to commercialise the technology.

On the cover of this edition of the magazine, you will find a very colourful and beachy example of WebAR courtesy of immersive technology company Unbnd.

As you will see, WebAR is pretty easy to use. No need to download an app, simply open your browser and start shooting those beachballs into the pool. We bet you won’t be able to get over 100.

And this simplicity is all about democratising augmented reality technology for marketers. It allows brands to build creative and immersive solutions, at scale, simply using the underlying technology that powers.

“WebAR has already started to democratise augmented reality. It’s essentially front-end web tech that uses the browser to deliver augmented reality (AR) experiences,” said Unbnd managing director David Loughnan.

“Through a QR code or URL, the consumer can be instantly deliver a marketing message in an immersive way using AR technology.

“It takes the barriers to entry away like downloading apps or wearing headsets and is set to create breakthroughs on capturing the constantly dwindling attention of the consumer.”

WebAR also plays an important role in the attribution process of a campaign by giving marketers the opportunity to connect offline and online assets.

For example, an OOH campaign can be connected to a WebAR experience and provide metrics to prove that the conversion came from a specific piece of collateral.

But it is important to note the distinction between WebAR and  app-based AR. The simple user experience also means technical capabilities are far more limited when compared with app-based AR.

AppAR enables all sorts of additional functionalities. GPS, accelerometer, gyroscope and processor technology all enhance the user experience.

The downside, however, is users must download an app to unlock this experience.

In terms of a total technological experience, app-based AR is superior and probably always will be. But WebAR provides a unique opportunity for marketers to grab the attention of customers and deliver a message in a simple and scalable way.

How to play B&T‘s mag cover

Simply place your copy of B&T on a flat, textured surface, get your smartphone and open a web browser to (if on iPhone use Safari). Take a moment to scan the cover and its surroundings.

You’re set to start playing!

All you have to do is flick the ball into the pool as many times as you can in one minute. Bounce the ball off the table if you like, but be sure to watch out for the wind. See how many times you can land the ball in a drink and then if you’re good enough, enter your name on the leader board!


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