Isobar Launches ‘Augmented Humanity: Isobar Trends Report 2018’

Download the report here.

Isobar predicts that 2018 will be the year of Augmented Humanity, a year where technology enhances and scales our most human attributes. In 2018, technological interfaces will become more natural and instinctive, technology will automate repetitive tasks to free up time for creativity and compassion, and artificial intelligence will meet emotional intelligence.

Isobar’s innovation and strategy experts from around the world have defined five key trends that explore this evolving relationship between humanity and technology and predict a harmonious future. Augmented Humanity explores the ways in which technology enhances and fuels our most human attributes – the ability to recognise and trust each other, to adapt to changing circumstances and the power to deliver true creativity.

Jean Lin, Isobar’s Global CEO, comments, “Artificial intelligence is great, but humans score on emotional intelligence. The power of being human is in empathy. This cannot be automated or outsourced. Augmented Humanity will use technology to scale everything that is best and most powerful about human interaction.”

The report argues that we may one day view the era of anonymous, one size fits all transactions as a temporary blip in our evolution, and that as technology advances it will become more human, not less. It will return us to a time where voice will be the primary way we interact with the world, where we will be recognised and rewarded in stores, and where we will buy more directly from trusted suppliers.

Isobar’s five key trends for 2018 explore this intersection of technology and humanity, magic and the machine, code and conscience:

1. Body Talk explores the body as an interface, as our eyes and ears replace touching and tapping.
2. Powered by People tackles the shift from customers to communities as technology turbocharges the sharing economy.
3. The Economy of Me looks at the power of AI to deliver ever more personalised products, prices and places.
4. The Ethical Algorithm tackles technology as a force for good; in a world of fake news and algorithm bias is there such a thing as moral code?
5. The Makers and the Machines explores the extraordinary union of art and technology to create outputs we could never before imagine.

Within each theme, Isobar unpicks key sub trends and explores how they come to life today, in the future, and what they mean for businesses and brands right now. The report celebrates the importance of emotion at every touchpoint; in this new landscape it will no longer be enough for technologists to ask “how does it work?” – they need to consider human emotion and drivers and ask “how does it feel?”.

Download the report here.

Playing around with Facebook’s AR camera effect

Facebook has launched an exciting new feature called ‘Facebook Camera Effects’, a new tool that allows designers to create effects for the Facebook Camera, ranging from a simple frame to stunning augmented reality experiences.

Facebook has been eyeing the success of Snapchat’s famous lenses and filters, which can be customized for brands, and it’s keen to tap into the potential.

Facebook Camera Effects is not a mere copy/paste though. Similarly to when Instagram adopted the popular ‘stories’ feature from Snapchat, Facebook has made some very welcome changes. The biggest one is that Facebook has essentially made Camera Effects an open platform, leaving out the need for time-consuming review periods or obligatory media costs to host the effect. Thanks to this evolution, Camera Effects are both fast to get out unto the public – we can launch an animated effect within a few days of the briefing! – and easy to create, resulting in greatly reduced development times and costs.

Wanna have some fun? Hit the link (on mobile, duh) for an Halloween example designed by the agency.

This link can then be distributed to any audience with promoted Facebook posts. Once audiences click on the link, they get the option to send a notification to their phone, which will take them directly to the Facebook Camera, featuring the effect.

We’ve tested the feature together with Beiersdorf on Nivea Men and have included a Facebook Camera Effect into their campaign promoting Movember, an initiative where men are encouraged to grow their facial hair to support men’s health. An AR effect was developed allowing users to see how they would look with the coolest ‘stache ever.

The effect will be promoted with Facebook link ads. Test it here (remember, mobile duh).

Talents:

Geoffrey Moulart – Head of Social Media

Willem De Rede – Social Media Strategist

Margaux D’Herckers – Designer

Julien Toussaint – Designer

Facebook taking augmented reality (AR) to the mass market.

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At this years Facebook F8 conference in San Jose, California Zuckerberg (2017) announced the launch of a suite of new AR features and tools for the Facebook camera that are collectively branded the Camera Effects Platform. And this is good news if you’ve ever wanted turn your face into an animated character or fill your home with virtual Skittles or maybe play virtual chess on your dining table.

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Facebook actually released the first Camera Effects April 2017 for iOS and Android which include several branded effects, masks and interactive filters. Some of these new features are available today and to the average consumer this will appear at first very similar to SnapChat’s own live filters. The difference is not only the greater user base with over 1.23 billion daily active users (DAUs) on Facebook but also the room scanning technology and most importantly Facebook’s commitment to create a medium for independent developers and artists

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3D artists, developers and organisations who are members of the Facebook Developers program can apply today for a beta version of the AR Studio. This toolset will enable individuals and organisations to create exciting new AR experiences that take advantage of the Camera Effects Platform. The demonstrations highlight a sophisticated framework for constructing AR experiences including 3D object placement, animations and user interaction. There’s no details yet of how to construct the more advanced technologies announced during the F8 Keynote such as Simultaneous localisation and mapping (SLAM) or object recognition. But it’s safe to assume that these technologies will be coming to the AR Studio toolset. It’s also not yet entirely clear how these experiences will reach the consumer audience. Presumably it will follow prior distribution concepts utilised by Facebook’s other platforms such as Pages and Apps. These platforms typically saw new content discovered via the News Feed either by direct advertisement or peer to peer sharing and required the user to opt-in.

One way or another consumers will soon find new filters alongside the launch filters available today. And this future state, soon to be reality, will allow artists to take AR experiences that explore the boundaries of AR technology to the mass market faster than ever before.

Anton Wintergerst, Mobile Developer @ Isobar Melbourne