Last week, digital media giant Adobe announced that they will be entering the world of AR with a new program, Project Aero. The post on Adobe blog, by Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Abhay Parasnis, detailed the need for easier AR technology for artists and designers. It also introduced the open beta for Aero.
What’s Aero All About?
“While the creative community has been hearing about the potential of new immersive platforms, it’s been out of their reach. Each of these platforms require fundamentally different skillsets,” wrote Parasnis. “For AR to truly go mainstream — there’s a need to solve both sides of the equation — authoring and delivery — within a consistent immersive design platform. And that’s exactly what we plan to do.”
In order to do this, Adobe plans to make popular programs like Photoshop compatible with AR technology. They are also making a new series of AR design tools – which will work with Sensei, Adobe’s AI program – for both mobile and desktop devices. Sensei can help create in AR by reading lighting and texture in the environment.
How Will Adobe Do it?
Adobe is already a leading name in design. To tackle the entry into AR technology, they’re teaming with other big names in tech. Technology giant Apple and animation studio Pixar have partnered with Adobe on Aero. Other companies that are involved include Microsoft and the owner of Oculus, Facebook.
What Else Do We Know?
Despite knowing so little about Aero, Adobe’s partners allow more room for speculation. Adobe has been working with Apple and Microsoft for quite some time. These partnerships make it possible for Adobe products to be available on a wide variety of devices and platforms. These partnerships will be even more valuable going forward as Project Aero promises more Adobe mobile apps.
Pixar is likely involved to help Adobe work out issues unique to design in AR technology. While Pixar isn’t known for venturing into AR technology, they have more experience in 3D imaging and textures.
Adobe alluded several times to Aero allowing design in AR as well as for AR. Microsoft is one of the leaders in AR technology, especially in the case of design. This should help Adobe, a company familiar with design but not with AR applications.
“For AR to truly go mainstream — there’s a need to solve both sides of the equation — authoring and delivery — within a consistent immersive design platform. And that’s exactly what we plan to do.”
The only partner whose role is harder to guess is Facebook. Aside from owning the VR company Oculus, Facebook has not otherwise been largely involved with XR technology.
Unfortunately, Adobe has referred to Aero as being for professionals. This implies that it will be a big ticket item when it finally comes to market.
In the words of Adobe, “AR relies on the same principles of good design and compelling content as print, web, and mobile. We want to enable creatives who have mastered these skills and assets to take AR to the next level.”