New Unreal Engine 4 update brings official ARKit and ARCore support

Epic Games updated its Unreal Engine to v. 4.18 this week, slipping in a smorgasbord of changes aimed at improving performance and giving devs more tools to make games across more platforms.

While this is chiefly of note to devs using UE4, it’s interesting to skim through the 4.18 release notes and see that Epic has added official support for two notable augmented reality platforms: Apple’s ARKit, and the developer preview version of Google’s ARCore.

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Apple shows off the iPhone’s ARKit in action with The Machines

After describing the recently unveiled iPhone 8 as the first smartphone designed for AR, Apple demonstrated exactly how its ARKit and Metal 2 API can open the door for developers looking to build an AR game for iOS.

Apple says the next generation of iDevices have been custom tuned for AR, with cameras, gyroscopes, and accelerometers created to handle motion tracking, even in low-light.

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iOS tool ARKit lights a creative spARk in creators

Apple has introduced the new tool ARKit which will be launching officially with iOS 11 in the fall. ARKit creates an augmented reality experience using visual intertial odometry (VIO) to track the world in conjunction with camera sensor and core motion data.

With ARKit, iOS 11 devices can analyze the environment within camera view and detects horizontal planes in the area (like tables or floors) and can track and place objects on smaller feature points as well.

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