Helena Markey looks at dynamic uses of technology in events, turning the spotlight on Augmented Reality.

“There are all kinds of exciting ways to use Augmented Reality in the events space.  It gives really great equality of access as everyone uses a mobile device, which means that as an agency you can be very flexible and creative in the solutions you tailor for your clients.  I see it as an extremely effective way for communicators to bring the real world and technology together to add clearly demonstrable value to a campaign.

Augmented Reality is not new tech, but we are seeing increasingly innovative applications of it.  One example that stuck in my mind was an Olympic activation for London 2012.  All users had to have a special app installed on their phone, which then read a QR code in the physical world then activated a 3D archery game within the application.  The camera facility on the user’s phone allowed the individual’s physical surroundings to be the background against which the target appeared.

Another great application is the New York City Skyline.  It uses the GPS tag on the phone to show information about a building at a distance.  Increasingly, museums are adopting this technology to facilitate access to information about their exhibits.  In this case it could also be powered with a QR code, and could be applied to product showcases and exhibitions, meaning that the consumer has all the product information and ability to purchase at the tip of their fingers.

The only real limitations on what you can do with this technology are financial and creative:  you can pretty much do anything that you can conceive of, which puts you in an unrivalled position to really wow your audience and exemplify your expertise.”