AR Stickers Arrive To Android Smartphones Thanks To Google's Motion Stills App


Google is now bringing augmented reality stickers support to the Motion Stills app.

That means practically every Android smartphone out there with a gyroscope and an accelerometer (which is pretty much every one of them) will get it.

Motion Stills Gets AR Mode

The new AR stickers feature is accessible through the Motion Stills app's new AR mode. Just to be clear on what it does, it uses a smartphone's gyroscope and accelerometer to "stick" a virtual object on a flat surface and make it appear like it's really a part of the real-world environment.

"AR mode is powered by instant motion tracking, a six degree of freedom tracking system built upon the technology that powers Motion Text in Motion Stills iOS and the privacy blur on YouTube to accurately track static and moving objects. We refined and enhanced this technology to enable fun AR experiences that can run on any Android device with a gyroscope," Google says.

Here's a sample of an AR chicken from Google:

More Advanced AR Stickers

This isn't the first time that Google rolled out AR stickers. Back in December 2017, the Mountain View company released a sticker pack themed after Star Wars and Stranger Things, allowing Pixel 2 owners to add characters from the shows such as R2-D2, BB-8, and the Demogorgon to their photos and videos.

That said, Google also recently announced that winter sports AR Stickers are making their way to Pixel 2 devices, coinciding with the 2018 Winter Olympics. This announcement was made when it enabled Pixel Visual Core support — the company's image processing unit under the hoods of Pixel 2 units — for third-party apps such as Instagram, Snapchat, and WhatsApp.

Compared with the AR capabilities of Motion Stills, this is far more sophisticated. For one thing, it takes advantage of Google's ARCore, which is the company's second dedicated platform for the technology after Project Tango.

However, it's worth pointing out that the Motion Stills app can pretty much offer the same results: display a virtual object and make it appear like it's really there in real life.

One takeaway here is that Google is doubling down on AR, and from the look of things, it wants the technology to be accessible to more people. As a side note, AR is a revolutionary piece of mobile tech, after all, according to Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Motion Stills is already available for download at the Play Store, and it's compatible with Android 5.1 or later.

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