Augmented Reality in South Africa – A Look at Google’s Interactive Photo Booth

Augmented reality (AR) is an exciting and emerging technology, but much of its true potential has only been seen in developed markets, and many of those campaigns focus on a unique gimmick and not a functional solution to a business need.

Today we’re going to take a look at a case study closer to home – Sea Monster’s exciting work for a Google Engage day.

The Problem:

Google, through Creative Brands, approached Cape Town based AR and 2D Animation studio Sea Monster with a question: how could the search engine giant generate buzz at and during the Google Engage event, engage with guests in a meaningful, interactive way, and leave attendees with something fun yet functional?

As a by-product of the above, they also wanted to get as many people as possible to further embrace Google’s recently launched social network, Google+.

The Solution:

In keeping with Google’s reputation for being at the forefront of useful and exciting new technologies, Sea Monster, in collaboration with Creative Brands, decided to create an AR installation which would be showcased at the actual event. The idea also fitted in well with the “Engage” aspect of the event, as users hadto physically engage with the booth, and therefore the brand.

Sea Monster took the classic beach photo-booth concept and re-imagined it, turning it into a modern, multiple-choice experience. Players could choose from five themes and over 50 props to create a fun photo.

The Results:

The installation had a significant impact at the event, and Google received overwhelmingly positive feedback from excited users who were able to play in person with an AR app, and edit their profile in real-time.

Google Engage SA was also thrilled with the display, liberally sharing it on their Google+ profile page, and it was even present at their Google@Quirk day

Over and above the photo booth example, check out Sea Monster’s nifty business cards. Yes, through the use of an iPad or iPhone, these two business cards become a fully interactive nautical themed game. Jealous much?


Want to know more about the exciting world of Augmented Reality? Sea Monster will be visiting Quirk Cape Town this Friday for another inspiring University of Quirk session. Follow the live tweets at #UoQ and get involved!

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