Augmented reality (AR) has had a lot of attention lately — it is easily one of the hottest newest technologies of the last two years after the worldwide popularity of Pokémon Go. The technology’s ability to superimpose a computer-generated image on a real-world view is now available for consumer mobile devices, making immersive and compelling viewing available to everyone. And in response to the fast-moving development of this technology, tech companies are creating new workflows.
Today, we’re proud to announce we’re one of the first developers to add AR capabilities. Our free Vectorworks Nomad mobile app now offers a new viewing mode available on iOS devices that support Apple’s ARKit technology. While many third-party ARKit-based apps are available on the App Store, few exist for viewing CAD/BIM models. And, none allowed Vectorworks users to view their models in AR directly — until now.
Trying out new office furniture at the Vectorworks headquarters.
Nomad already had a 3D model viewing mode that let the user orbit around a model or walk through a model. However, with this new viewing mode, users can view Vectorworks models at their actual size and in context with the real world to make design decisions before they are built. The AR viewing mode removes the barrier between the virtual model and the real world, helping users and clients to better understand the design at scale, as well as illustrate potential design problems and facilitate discussion about the design.
Learn more about the new AR functionality in the Nomad app with this video.
Vectorworks users are already embracing the new AR technology. “As a must-have companion to Vectorworks, Nomad with AR represents a defining moment in working interactively with models,” said Brian Goodridge, principal at Thor Studios. “It’s a powerful tool when designing kitchens and custom cabinetry, because AR allows me to project my Vectorworks models into real-world spaces. Clients are now able to view and interact with my new kitchen designs inside their home before the cabinets are ever built.”
Download the free Nomad app from iTunes.