Telstra has partnered with Australian start-up tagSpace to deliver the next generation of augmented reality (AR) experiences.
The partnership will leverage Telstra’s 5G connectivity and allow customers to view important information, directions and updates on the world around them through their smartphone and augmented reality.
tagSpace augmented reality transforms customers’ smartphones into windows through which they can view the world with near real-time information overlayed – information such as when their train is coming and how packed it is or where the nearest restaurant is and what the specials are.
5G’s ability to enable responsive visual experiences, fast downloading of content and support more users can help take AR experiences to the next level.
Beta testing has already begun at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne and The Sydney Opera House – two perfect use cases for how the app will flourish in high-density situations.
Telstra Product Specialist, Ben Cunningham, said as Australians emerge from COVID lockdowns and return to live events, he could see the AR service providing real value at stadiums and tourist hotspots.
“Telstra 5G allows us to add additional layers of live data so, if you are a sports fan in a stadium we can guide you to your seat, give you live team news updates and even tell you where the shortest line is to get your pie, right on your Telstra 5G-enabled smartphone.
“Together with tagSpace, we are leveraging the low latency, high-capacity connection that 5G can offer and creating a whole new visual experience for our customers.
tagSpace founder, Paul Martin added “tagSpace’s vision is to enable information, navigation and entertainment at every location in the world, using AR. Our patented technology makes it incredibly easy for businesses to make their own AR content. Consumers can then enjoy it as continuous AR experiences throughout city-scale environments.
“Our ability to display dozens of simultaneous, live-streaming videos and near real-time information, whilst blending the real world with the virtual, legitimately exploits the power that 5G can offer.
“tagSpace’s partnership with Telstra is helping us leverage that technology to provide new, helpful and exciting services and experiences for Australians.”
The testing of tagSpace coincides with the beginning of Telstra’s mmWave 5G rollout. mmWave brings 5G to life by providing the capacity to facilitate data rich applications in high traffic areas such as tourism hotspots, shopping centres or even sports stadiums.
mmWave is a step change in the evolution of 5G, increasing the capacity by a factor of ten which enables tens of thousands of users to connect to the network in the same place at the same time without compromising connectivity.
mmWave signals only travel a short distance so the first phase of rollout will focus on transport hubs, shopping centres, tourist hotspots such as the Sydney Opera House and sports stadiums such as the MCG.
Telstra has begun the rollout of mmWave 5G and currently has 65 sites live across 5 major cities and expects to almost triple that number before the end of the year.