8th Wall unveils its new ‘Reality Engine’ development platform for creating WebAR experiences that automatically work across all devices

In Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Mixed Reality News

November 9, 2021 – 8th Wall, a provider of an augmented reality (AR) platform that makes it easy to build frictionless AR content for the mobile web (WebAR), has today announced the launch of its all-new ‘Reality Engine’, providing an AR development platform that enables WebAR experiences that immediately work across all devices: iOS and Android smartphones, tablets, computers and AR and VR headsets.

According to the company, Reality Engine is a completely reimagined version of 8th Wall’s original AR engine, fully optimized to adapt to a range of devices to serve up the appropriate immersive experience accordingly. Upon creating a WebAR project, developers can leverage what the company is calling the engine’s “Metaversal Deployment” capability, allowing them to build once and deploy everywhere, helping to unlock more places to access and engage with experiences and significantly expanding their reach, without expanding the development time. 

End users who access 8th Wall WebAR experiences will now be able to engage with them in augmented reality on mobile and smart glasses, 3D on computers, and virtual reality (VR) on head-mounted displays. 8th Wall’s Reality Engine ensures that the user gets the right experience based on the device they are on and manages all of the mappings needed for a user to properly view, interact and engage with the immersive content no matter what device they are using.

“This is the start of the new responsive web,” said Erik Murphy-Chutorian, CEO and Founder of 8th Wall. “Just like 2D websites needed to adapt from desktop to mobile, immersive websites need to react to the different devices that are used to experience them. With the launch of our Reality Engine, developers can for the first time build a WebAR experience that’s instantly compatible across the most popular mobile, desktop and headworn devices.”

8th Wall Reality Engine provides five core features in order to make Metaversal Deployment possible: 

  • Reality Application Runtime – 8th Wall’s AR application framework has been rebuilt to respond to every device type;
  • Spatialized UI – Automatic translation of 2D web UI elements onto a spatial control panel when an experience is accessed on a VR or AR headset;
  • Interaction Mapping – Universal mapping of gestures to handle input across devices including controllers and hand tracking;
  • Environment Mapping – Instant application of an environment to ground 3D content in space when the experience is accessed on computers and VR devices;
  • Responsive Scale – Accommodating user position by making 3D content comfortable and accessible while ensuring the developer’s vision is consistent across devices.

“The Web is evolving, becoming spatial and more immersive, and we believe that our Reality Engine equips developers with the tools they need to create content for the next iteration of the Internet—the Metaverse,” said Tom Emrich, VP of Product at 8th Wall. “By enabling 8th Wall developers to take advantage of Metaversal Deployment, their WebAR projects can now be immediately accessed on the devices that have become an integral part of our daily lives today, as well as the devices that will facilitate our lives in the Metaverse tomorrow–all without increasing development time.”

 With the launch of 8th Wall’s new Reality Engine, developers can now extend the reach of their smartphone-based immersive experiences even further to meet users on their computers and headworn devices including Oculus Quest/Meta Quest and Microsoft HoloLens.

Developers can start creating WebAR World Effects projects with the all-new Reality Engine, available from the 8th Wall website today. New users can sign up for a 14-day free trial of the 8th Wall platform. Existing developers can simply log in and begin building.

Image / video credit: 8th Wall / YouTube

About the author

Sam Sprigg

Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past seven years.