Apple’s ARKit 2 Means Co-workers Can Collaborate in Mixed Reality


Augmented reality changes the way users interact with the world around them by displaying 3D images over an existing environment. Apple gave every person with an iPhone the ability to enter augmented reality with ARKit. The latest generation of this technology – ARKit 2 – offers more features and drives AR forward.

AR has found its way into several industries, such as manufacturing, as a solution for overhauling mundane processes. Such AR headsets as Google Glass, provide a hands-free way for working in mixed reality. As AR has developed, business use cases have grown.

With the latest release of ARKit 2, Apple is providing businesses and developers with an improved platform to create AR applications. The latest version of ARKit, which will be officially available for use in September 2018, includes features like a new file format, persistent experiences and improved object tracking. These developments allow users to collaborate and interact in the same AR environment, which was not possible in the past. The potential for collaboration in AR could have endless use cases for business.

“Immersive technologies are the next interface,” said Samuel Huber, founder and CEO of, a mixed reality advertising company. “ARKit is a perfect stepping stone for businesses to understand how this new interface works, and start developing useful AR content – first on mobile, later on headsets.”

Business can drive AR forward by creating new applications and introducing creative and new ways to use technology. Understanding some of the new developments, as well as some initial steps to creating an app with ARKit, can help business owners and developers visualize new projects.

The biggest announcement with ARKit 2 is the ability for users to collaborate in a mixed reality environment. This has endless applications for gamers, and Apple has already partnered with companies like Lego to create unique gaming environments. For businesses, however, the shared experiences mean co-workers can collaborate on a project in AR. A home renovation project, for example, means multiple contractors and the home owner could view potential adjustments and changes before they occur.

These shared experiences are also persistent, meaning they will exist even after the application is closed. This allows users to, essentially, save whatever work they have and pick up from where they left off in the future. In the case of a renovation project, the homeowner could view construction in AR a few days after it was created by the contractors.

“Shared experience means that AR is no longer a solitary experience,” Huber said. “This opens up AR to multiple applications, such as collaboration tools, education or training apps where the content can be discovered by multiple users at once.”

Apple collaborated with Pixar on a new open file format: usdz. This open file format will allow AR sharing in Apple apps like Messages, Safari and Mail. Apple also introduce improve image tracking and 3D image creation.

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