Merging the Digital and Real World Experience

Blippar app was born out of a joke at a remote bar located in south-west England

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Ambarish Mitra often reminisces about how his augmented reality app Blippar was born out of a joke at a remote bar located in south-west England. Founded in the UK in 2011, Blippar app, the flagship product of Blippar, is the first augmented reality browser, bridging the gap between digital and real-world experiences using AI and AR. It allows users over time to "blipp' (scan) anything that they're curious about - from objects to buildings, animals and people - to unlock useful and entertaining content and AR experiences.


Speaking about the innovations explored by his company in the AR space, Mitra explained, "In the last few years, we have developed thousands of augmented reality campaigns and through this vast experience we have come to understand the importance of artificial intelligence in achieving scale. Before we augment the world, it is crucial that we understand the reality in front of us and as such, we have built our capabilities in the areas of artificial intelligence, computer vision and deep learning,"

When asked as to how Indian companies can better utilize this technology Mitra said, "AR provides a great combination of education, gamification, product visualization and content dissemination, which has potential use in every industry and particularly those mentioned above. It is very important for these AR experiences to move beyond the initial "wow'-factor and for companies to understand how to use this technology as a real-time channel to communicate."

As per Mitra, the categories which have immense potential for disruption by AR technology are education, social networking and communication, retail and commerce, healthcare and advertising.

When it comes to developing countries like India adopting this technology, Mitra strongly believes that as the second-largest smartphone market after China and the global leader in smartphone adoption with a net addition of 350 million connections in 2016-20, India will be one of the largest ecosystems for AR adopters and creators.

"Historically, India has been held-back by infrastructure issues and lack of connectivity - but with new 4G plans coming in with a goal to make "data' accessible to all - innovators across the board stand to benefit" he added. Blippar's AR technology has been used by global brands such as Porsche, Nestle, L'Oréal, GSK and General Mills to create exciting and award-winning experiences which deepen consumer engagement. Blippar now has offices across the UK, USA, India and Singapore.