Challenge will include three competition events in 2021 in communities across the U.S.

WASHINGTON – October 13, 2020 – US Ignite, in partnership with Facebook Reality Labs, today announces a new Augmented Reality Developer Challenge aimed at creating next-generation AR applications and services for smart communities. The AR Developer Challenge will include a series of community-driven competition events focused on solving problems in areas such as healthcare, education, workforce development, and more. US Ignite will award $20,000 in cash and community support for each event, and will require host municipalities or other organizations in each community to match that funding in further cash and in-kind resources for a total investment of $40,000 or more.

Through the generous support of Facebook Reality Labs, the AR Developer Challenge will stand up three competition events in the United States between January 2021 and August 2021. Communities and their local partners may apply to host an event by submitting a proposal before the deadline of December 11, 2020. Winners will be announced early next year and will receive competition guidance and promotion in addition to prize funding.

“These challenge events will give local businesses, municipal governments, and civic organizations across the country an opportunity to tap into their local innovation ecosystems to develop novel AR applications and solve pressing community problems,” said Scott Turnbull, Director of Technology for US Ignite. “We’re thrilled to partner with Facebook Reality Labs on this program and look forward to seeing the creative augmented reality applications that emerge.”

Developers for the AR Challenge events will use technologies like Facebook’s Spark AR platform and other augmented reality solutions to compete for prizes and community recognition.

More information on the AR Developer Challenge is available at



About US Ignite
US Ignite is a high-tech nonprofit with a mission to accelerate the smart community movement. We work to guide communities into the connected future, create a path for private sector growth, and advance technology research that’s at the heart of smarter development. For more information, visit

About Facebook Reality Labs
Facebook Reality Labs’ work in augmented and virtual reality spans a number of breakthrough technologies and touches industries ranging from entertainment and gaming to healthcare and beyond. Oculus lets people defy distance with cutting-edge VR hardware, while Portal helps friends and families stay connected and share the moments that matter in meaningful ways. Spark AR is the world’s largest AR platform, powering AR experiences for Facebook’s apps and devices. Our research teams invent and iterate on novel technologies that break exciting new ground.