If you’re the type of person who enjoys reading about and exploring history, art, science, etc and traipsing to exhibits and museums every once in a while, just visiting institutions that house artifacts and all kinds of paintings and sculptures is a joy in itself. But what if you could do so much more when you visit, just with the power of a smartphone? We now live in an age where things like that (and more!) are possible, and Google wants to bring it to you. Tango, their augmented reality platform, is teaming up with institutions around the country so visitors can explore their museums in a different way.
The lucky museum that they are partnering with first is the Detroit Institute of Arts, also in partnership with GuidiGo, an app that does guided tours in various museums around the world. They have built Lumin, a mobile tour created on the Tango platform and adds AR interactivity and information so that you will learn more about their exhibits, in a pretty interesting way. When you visit the museum, you just ask to borrow the Lenovo Phab 2 Pro phone that already has pre-loaded the AR guided tour from GuidiGo.
For example, you will be able to see what’s underneath the sarcophagus as you use your phone to “X-ray” the exhibit. You will also be able to visualize the Ishtar Gate at scale through the motion tracking technology of Tango. You can also see what the Limestone Reliefs would have originally looked like a thousand years ago. You can unroll the cylinder seals from Mesopotamia without actually touching and damaging them through AR.
Google has promised that this is just the first of many partnerships with museums and institutions. It would be pretty interesting to see how this will develop and if this will make field trips more exciting for students (and adults too!)