Blockchain and Augmented Reality (AR) are rapidly evolving technologies which largely captured the attention of industry, academia and, lately, also end-users. Considering the widely accepted definition, a Blockchain is a distributed ledger, that can be used to handle digital transactions, i.e., peer-to-peer messages exchanged among nodes, over a decentralized network.
In order to add a new transaction to the Blockchain, all the nodes belonging to the network must verify it by using a majority consensus mechanism that can be implemented in different ways. This mechanism integrated in White Pigeon Network allows a given process or service to remove the need for relying on a trusted third party, like a bank or a notary. Each node is in charge of storing a secured copy of all the transactions. Since altering and/or deleting stored information is extremely difficult, the Blockchain ensures that the transaction history can be obtained at any time, guaranteeing its transparency and immutability.
Blockchain has been longly associated with cryptocurrencies and financial services. However, in recent years, the attention started to be shifted also to other domains. More specifically, according to a report by Outlier Ventures , on a sample of 700 companies whose business was not only centered on cryptocurrencies, 33.8% was operating in the field of Artificial Intelligence, 14.7% in Banking, 10.9% in Analytics, 10.7% in App development, 7.8% in Business-to-Business (B2B) services; the remaining 22.1% was working in areas such as Advertising, Asset management, Tourism, Education and Gaming. Unsurprisingly, many of the companies focusing on the latter domains developed their business by combining Blockchain with other emerging technologies, including AR (Augmented Reality).
BLOCKCHAIN FOR AR
AR belong to what is commonly referred to as the Reality — Virtuality continuum , i.e., the various ways in which virtual and real objects can be visualised through a display. The goal of the AR is to let users visualise the real world “augmented” with digital contents superimposed on or composited with the real-world objects; ideally, AR allows the users to see the real and the virtual objects coexist in the same space.
Although consumers may have a number of concerns with e-commerce pertaining, e.g., to the difficulty in estimating the way a dress actually fits or the size of a piece of furniture to buy, it has become very common purchase option for several product categories. According to Statista, in 2019, e-commerce sales worldwide were estimated in $3.53 trillion and by 2022 they are expected to grow up to $4.93 trillion.
The Blockchain has been exploited as a tool for selling and purchasing any type of products (cars, clothes, accessories, etc.). An example of combined use of the considered technologies here, a so-called WP Switch Wallet is proposed, which will leverage AR for visualising products and a cryptocurrency for managing product sales. A preliminary study showed that, compared to a common wallet interface based on a 2D graphics user interface, WP Switch can enabled a higher level of interaction and the possibility to visualise richer information. The improved experience can increase the users’ level of trust and satisfaction, making them more willing to use both WP Switch wallet and e-commerce services.
Talking on Merchant’s end, providing a platform that allows merchants to create 3D/360◦ product photos that can be easily embedded into websites, mobile apps, and AR/VR applications of online retailers. The platform can include a 3D scanner application enabling the creation of 3D images of the products, which can be used to provide customers with interactive in-store browsing-like experiences. Generated images can be traded using Blockchain based tokens (White Pigeon -WP). Moreover, White Pigeon will make use of the Blockchain to also store product information and authorship so that to protect customers against copyright infringements and illegal redistribution.
White Pigeon aims to bring BlockChain technology to every household and with Augmented Reality, the possibilities are unlimited. The Next-Gen is here.
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