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I get a lot of questions like "I want to start developing AR from now on, but what should I start with?"
While I am very happy that the number of people who are paying attention to AR technology and are interested in multiplying what they are doing with AR is increasing, there are a certain number of people who have similar problems. I felt that there were many, so I decided to put together my own thoughts in a note so that I could help those people as much as possible.
This article is a note that introduces recommended study methods by answering three frequently asked questions for "people who want to start developing AR applications but do not know what to do".
Note) This article is the best method I think of as of July 2019, and it is thought that the method and what to learn will change over time. Please keep this in mind and read it.
Which technology should I start with?
In recent years, the number of large companies and startups investing in AR has increased rapidly, and along with this, the number of SDKs and devices that can be used for AR development has also increased rapidly.
It's great for developers, but for those who are new to AR development, you may be wondering which tool to choose.
This time, I will omit the introduction of various devices and SDKs, but in conclusion I recommend starting with AR development using ARKit and Unity.
Easy to find development cases and development colleagues
After all, this is the number one reason. There are the most cases of AR development using ARKit and Unity among smartphone AR.
It's easy to find a solution on the Web or find someone to give you advice when you get stuck in developing something, and I think it's very easy to get started for those who are starting AR development from now on. ..
As an option other than smartphone AR for AR development, there is also the option of developing an AR application that runs on a glass-type device.
However, glass-type devices are still expensive at 200,000 to 300,000 yen, so people who are working on AR application development for the first time may feel that the barrier is a little high.
On the other hand, in the case of smartphone AR, there are many cases where you have it now. If you have an old iPhone or you do not have an iPhone and need to purchase an ARKit compatible iPhone, you will incur the cost of purchasing equipment, but if it is an iPhone, purchase it as a smartphone for everyday use You can do it, and I think you can start with the glue of changing the model.
Even if you get tired of developing AR in the worst case, if you think that you have the latest iPhone, the financial burden will not be so great. For that reason, we recommend ARKit, which uses an iPhone as a starting point.
By the way, recently, a glass-type device called nreal ligth, which looks almost the same as sunglasses, has appeared in the 50,000 yen range, so there is an option to wait for the release of a device like this, but those who want to start development now I think ARKit x Unity is good.
Note) nreal light will be released for developers in September 2019, and only Android can be connected.
When developing iOS apps using ARKit, there is an option to develop using XCode in addition to Unity, but I recommend using Unity.
The reason is that I am good at working with 3D objects, and once I master Unity, I can apply it to development on other AR devices.
Originally XCode was introduced to develop 2D applications. Unity, on the other hand, is a game engine for creating 3D games. Therefore, Unity is better at handling 3D content such as AR.
Nowadays, Unity is adopted in most of these AR / VR developments. Hololens, Magicleap, and nreal light are all the first to release SDKs for Unity.
In this way, learning Unity will be a great strength when developing AR for other smartphones and device-type devices in the future.
・ ・ ・
These are the reasons why I recommend ARKit and Unity. By the way, if you don't have a Macbook and your smartphone is Android, I may recommend ARCore x Unity. This is because ARCore and ARKit have many functional similarities, and there are some developers who develop with ARCore.
How do I learn how to develop?
Now let's see how you can catch up with the information the next time you start developing with ARKit x Unity.
To get started with development, you need to start by catching up with Unity itself.
The most recommended catch-up for Unity is Aimi Kitamura's "Unity Textbook".