Earlier in 2021, US Ignite selected three communities to participate in an Augmented Reality Developer Challenge in partnership with Facebook Reality Labs. The goal of these challenge competitions is to facilitate community-driven development of augmented reality (AR) applications designed to address local problems.

AR applications overlay computer-generated images on a user’s view of the world. This experience can be accomplished using smartphones, tablets, AR glasses, or other devices. AR applications generate immersive experiences that may serve as important tools by integrating and sharing information into one platform to enhance or enable a task. 

The City of Raleigh and Town of Cary in North Carolina have teamed up to host the RIoT Your Reality Competition, a two-phase competition that calls on creatives of all backgrounds to contribute AR application ideas in the areas of equity & inclusion, tourism, and workforce development. 

The competition’s first pitch event was held on April 12, 2021 over Zoom and featured 17 teams selected from a pool of over thirty applicants. Teams pitched their proposals in front of a panel of judges and responded to questions.

Following deliberation, judges selected six teams to move forward to the competition’s next phase. These teams will pitch their prototypes at the Final Pitch Event on July 27, 2021 at the Connected Communities Conference in Raleigh, NC.

Here are the finalists from the first phase of the competition.

  • LiRA, Inc. is developing an artificial intelligence platform that recognizes specific facial motions associated with speech. 
  • NatureXR is developing the GardenXR Rain Garden AR application that would allow citizens to design, measure and plant an augmented garden on their property, as well as interface with Raleigh’s Stormwater Management Rain Garden team.
  • Wild Portals will use AR technologies to allow visitors of the Raleigh Convention Center to explore a built-in AR story and book their events with the Raleigh Convention Center using QR codes and a smartphone camera.
  • Doubtless will be a story walk that takes people on a tour of how Raleigh used to look, bringing to life the many stories and events that have been forgotten or missed. 
  • Blue Recruit is developing an app that will create unique and targeted experiences for job seekers to help them attain their career goals.
  • CyreneQ will use AR technology to transform any room into a fully equipped learning lab with just a smart device. 

Click here to watch the RIoT Your Reality First Pitch Event on YouTube!

If you have any questions about the Augmented Reality Developer Challenge, or if you would like to collaborate with US Ignite on future opportunities, please contact [email protected]