While augmented reality (AR) isn't particularly mainstream as of yet, some companies introduce AR experiences in their products from time to time. At the forefront is Google, which intermittently adds 3D AR models to Google Search, allowing consumers to view some very interesting visualizations from the comfort of their homes. This time, the firm has added popular Japanese characters to its portfolio of AR models.
Google has noted that there has been a notable increase in anime-related searches on its search engine. Search interest for "anime sugoi", that is "anime is amazing" spiked 2300% globally in the past five years. As such, Google feels that it is the right time to bring characters from Japanese anime, games, and TV shows to life via AR models.
The characters that Google is introducing to AR in Search are 14 in number and include Hello Kitty, Gamora, Pac-Man, Gundam, and Ultraman. You can explore them on your mobile device by searching for one of the characters and tapping on "View in 3D". You can also rotate and zoom in on the characters to view them in varying level of details, and even have the capability to cast them on real-life surfaces. Furthermore, some characters also have sound effects that you can listen to.
It is important to note that 3D content is available on Android devices running Android 7.0 or above while AR content is available on ARCore-enabled devices. Meanwhile on iOS, you need iOS 11.0 or above to be able to take advantage of the new content that Google has added.