Augmented Reality company DAQRI has acquired AR software pioneer ARToolworks, makers of the open source AR platform, ARToolKit. It has been years since I have used the platform myself but this is interesting news.
Here is the news via Business Wire:
DAQRI, the leading augmented reality/4D company, today announced the acquisition of ARToolworks, pioneers in the field of augmented reality and creator of ARToolKit, the world’s most popular library for AR application development. DAQRI, already a leader in 4D hardware and software, will make all of the features of ARToolKit’s commercially licensed Pro version, such as the markerless, natural feature tracking libraries, iOS, Android and Unity versions, available free and open source under a LGPL v.3 License, as of today. This includes a commitment to expand ARToolKit, with DAQRI’s state-of-the-art industrial and mobile tracking technologies.
“My original vision for AR involved a future where this technology was part of our everyday lives, providing a layer of information over everything in the world around us. When ARToolKit was released, it inspired a whole generation of augmented reality development. For over 15 years, when people entered the space, ARToolKit was one of the first things they picked up, and it helped them learn what AR was all about,” said Brian Mullins, founder and CEO, DAQRI. “We believe that it’s important to have free and open source software at the core of an industry. We’re hoping that with this acquisition, and our commitment to developing ARToolKit in the future, we can kick off the next AR revolution and inspire a whole new generation to pick it up and make things that haven’t been imagined yet.”
Founded in 2001, ARToolworks was an early advocate in making cutting-edge AR technology available commercially. As the creators of ARToolKit, the company has continued to develop AR technology and expanded into a robust slate of customized software. ARToolKit is one of the most widely used AR tracking libraries, with close to one million downloads to date and is available on all major operating systems and programming languages. The ARToolworks’ team will join DAQRI, with CEO Ben Vaughan and CTO Philip Lamb leading the newly created open source division.
“My original vision for AR involved a future where this technology was part of our everyday lives, providing a layer of information over everything in the world around us,” said Vaughan. “Now we are on the cusp of that vision becoming a reality. ARToolKit’s existing open source partners created an array of derivative products that helped drive the early growth of the AR industry. With DAQRI, we will be offering the community a host of new features and in-depth support to encourage a second wave of development.”