Layar Shifts Focus From AR to Print, But Has Hopes for Geo-Located Future | Street Fight

Heard on the Street

Layar Shifts Focus From AR to Print, But Has Hopes for Geo-Located Future

1 Comment 08 April 2013 by

7934730When Layar launched in 2010, a lot of excitement about the Dutch company stemmed from its augmented reality browser. The concept was simple: open the Layar app, hold up your phone and aim its camera, and learn information about your surroundings.

But while the app proved very cool to local-focused techies, it didn’t quite catch on with regular users the way that it needed to.

“What we’ve learned with the phone is that people will hold up their phone and look at the Layar once, but the second time is so difficult,” co-founder Maarten Lens-Fitzgerald told Street Fight recently via Skype. “You really need a good use case, a lot of calls to action. You need to give something unique and special and lots of reminders. We haven’t seen that yet.”

So after a pivot, the company is now focusing on its other product, Vision, which assists publishers in augmenting a print product with digital information. The idea is the same, except that instead of holding the phone up to a physical space, a user looks down at a magazine or newspaper and sees whatever the publisher adds to the page. Publications including The New Yorker, Publishers Weekly, and Reader’s Digest Canada have signed on. Downloads of the app are over 28 million and 35,000 people are using the Layar Creator, which the company launched in July and simplifies the process. Best of all, says Lens-Fitzgerald, users are now returning to Layar multiple times.

“With Vision, we like that people are really getting into it. We see the re-usage,” he says.

Still, Layar has not given up finding a niche in the geo-location market. The co-founder sees an increasing interest in the location space. “People are really getting into geo, especially in the U.S.,” he says. “We don’t promote [the product anymore], but we do think that specifically with Google Glass coming online, there may be some more applications for it. We definitely are keeping tabs on it.” Lens-Fitzgerald notes that there’s no compass in Google Glass yet, but that didn’t stop his company from ordering one of the headsets to experiment with.

With Google Glass on the horizon and the increasing focus on location and mobile, Layar’s initial idea could become popular again in the near future. In fact, Lens-Fitzgerald thinks print could be the key for re-starting the geo-location side of the business: “Publications could be a great way to start a geo experience. They are in your face,” he says.

Noah Davis is a senior editor at Street Fight.

  • http://www.facebook.com/robert.mao Robert Mao

    Checkout digimarc

Big Things Coming in Local in 2015!


Join us in New York, San Francisco and Denver for Street Fight's industry-leading conferences. Top speakers, great networking, valuable insights, and killer parties.
Click here for dates and details!

Newsletter

Get hyperlocal industry headlines in your inbox every morning. Subscribe to the Street Fight Daily newsletter.


See how brands compare in local presence across areas such as local SEO, data accuracy, social engagement and more. Presented by Where2GetIt and Street Fight. Click here to see the battle!

Free White Paper: Pay-Per-Call’s Role in Improving Marketing ROI

Call campaigns can make the phone ring — or alienate prospective customers. Learn how to get it right: Download "Pay-Per-Call's Role in Improving Marketing ROI."

Produced by Street Fight Insights for Soleo.

Free White Paper: Contextualization

Learn how to deliver better, revenue-driving consumer experiences. Download "Contextualization: Leveraging Location-Based Technology and Mobile to Drive Success for Brands."

Sponsored by Artisan Mobile.

Follow Us

Get the latest Street Fight news, information and analysis via Twitter and Facebook.

The Commerce Graph

The “Commerce Graph” is a new framework we have developed to think about the future of physical exchange. The model offers an alternative to the dominant narrative about the commerce landscape that frames digital networks as an adversary of physical exchange.

The $20 Billion Mobile Marketing Opportunity

Strategies and insights into the landscape of targeting options and how they deliver foot traffic and sales for SMBs.
Check out our 2013 report and get your copy today!

Twitter

© 2014 Street Fight.

Powered by WordPress. Hosting by Page.ly