Planning Some Augmented Reality For The Tablet Market? You May Want To Wait…

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On the surface, Augmented Reality and Tablets seem like a match made in heaven.  The press has fallen in love with the idea and given the concept an inordinate amount of coverage.  But the fact is 95% of Americans don’t own a tablet (admittedly, some might argue that I should add a “yet” at the end of that sentence).  So when it comes to AR should brands and marketers dedicate budget towards the device today?

According to this article, Nielsen Research states that 4.8% of Americans have a tablet (and the piece states that that number is even lower in the UK – 1.7%).  It’s also important to note that that number wasn’t broken down by device, so we don’t know how many of those Americans have the first generation iPad… That is, the iPad that lacks a front-facing camera (necessary for most AR). But odds are, it’s a solid chunk (if not the majority).

In my opinion, for Augmented Reality to advance we need to focus on creating applications that people will actually use today, not tomorrow.  It’s not about buzzwords, tech demos, and concept videos… It’s about using AR as a tool to create meaningful experiences for “real people”…

What do you think?  Should brands dedicate budget to tablet based AR, or should they be focusing on creating goal oriented web, kiosk, and OOH based executions with technologies that are available today (please note, I left mobile off that list for a reason)?

Or, feel free to contact me on twitter.