BBC's new AR offering lets users explore historical artefacts

BBC's new AR offering lets users explore historical artefacts
Photo Credit: Thinkstock
12 Feb, 2018

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has become the latest news organisation to experiment with newer technlogies such as Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) as content providers increasingly look to produce more engaging matter beyond text, audio and video.

The public service broadcaster has announced that it will make its first foray into AR via a companion app - on both iOS and Android - for a new series called Civilisations that it will air one of its channels.

AR superimposes a computer-generated image on a user's view of the real world, thus providing a composite view.

BBC said the series will take viewers through the history of of British culture and also showcase famous artworks and architecture. The AR app will enable viewers to walk around and explore these landmarks which have been recreated virtually.

Among the artefacts on display include an Egyptian mummy from the Torquay Museum, Rodin's The Kiss from the National Museum of Wales, and the Umbrian Madonna and Child from the National Museum of Scotland.

The media giant had earlier experimented with VR, providing experiences ranging from 360-degree videos to full VR experiences.

Last July, BBC had launched a new VR app called Taster VR, which used startup EEVO's technology.

The New York-headquartered immersive content startup had first raised $1 million in angel funding in 2015. Last year, it secured another $1.3 million from Eagle Advisors, FundersClub, 37 Angels and others, according to a TechCrunch report.

Apart from BBC, other news giants like The New York Times have also been experimenting with VR content. The New York Times offers news stories in the VR format via its apps.