Unity MARS Augmented and Mixed Reality authoring studio now available

In Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality News

June 8, 2020 – Unity Technologies, a leading platform for creating and operating interactive, real-time 3D content, has today announced the arrival of Unity MARS: a mixed and augmented reality (MR/AR) authoring studio that gives creators across industries the power to build intelligent AR content seamlessly.

According to the company, experiences created with Unity MARS are fully responsive to surrounding physical space, work in any location, and with any kind of data, while giving creators the ability to deliver AR experiences with digital content that appears to live in and react to the real world.

“We’ve identified three of the biggest challenges AR creators face, and we solved them with Unity MARS,” said Timoni West, Director of Product, XR Tools, Unity Technologies. “Creators can author complex, data-oriented apps visually, test their experiences without leaving the MARS authoring environment, and deliver apps that are contextually aware, flexible, and truly interact with the real world.”

Unity MARS also brings sensors and environment data into the creative workflow and enables creators to deliver apps with runtime logic to adapt responsively to real-world conditions.

To help creators quickly begin building without starting from scratch, Unity MARS also includes Starter Templates. These pre-designed building blocks cover popular AR use cases, including a training tutorial application that works with all of Unity’s indoor and outdoor environment templates, with the company stating that more will be available soon.

The benefits of Unity MARS, as outlined by Unity, include:

  • WYSIWYG authoring experience – Creators can author complex, data-oriented apps visually with a customized window for AR that includes tools and UI that give users the power to see, prototype, test, and visualize robust AR apps as they will run in the real world;
  • Intelligent real-world recognition – The platform’s query system gives apps contextually relevant behavior based on a user’s surroundings. Any kind of data from any source can be used, including semantic object recognition, location data, map data, product data and more;
  • Responsive visual authoring – Unity MARS’ procedural authoring system uses proxies to represent real-world objects, conditions, and actions as a framework;
  • Test in the Unity Editor – AR experiences can be tested against a variety of examples of indoor and outdoor spaces without needing real-world data on hand or needing to physically test the experience in every real-world environment that creators want an app to work in;
  • Fuzzy authoring – Creators can use “fuzzy authoring” to define minimum and maximum measurements for real-world objects rather than coding precise measurements;
  • Multiplatform AR dev framework – Experiences can be built once and deployed across all AR platforms, including ARKit, ARCore, Magic Leap and Hololens devices, with AR Foundation. AR Foundation is the preferred method for bringing real-world understanding into Unity MARS.

Whether creators want to design a car, review a building design, or add AR as a feature to a mobile game, those interested in making AR experiences using Unity MARS can enjoy a free 45-day trial.

Unity states that it’s platform has powered many AR and virtual reality (VR) experiences on the market today including applications for The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, Nissan, LEGO, and Wayfair. For more information, visit the Unity MARS product page.

Video credit: Unity Technologies / 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.