50 Great Augmented Reality ideas for events and promotions

With a gigantic market value that is growing every single day, Augmented reality is indeed a buzzword nowadays. From beauty and food industries to large car manufacturers and software brands, all sorts of companies are investing in the augmented reality industry and rightly so. The market value of AR is compounding at a rate of 43.8% per annum and is expected to reach 340.16 billion USD by 2028. Augmented reality is the most vibrant way to interact and engage with your customers. But, with information scattered all over the internet, knowing what is right, becomes a great deal! Therefore, here we are with 50 Great Augmented Reality ideas for events and promotions. Fasten your seat belts and let’s begin.

1. What is Augmented Reality?

Buckminster Fuller once said, “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” Technology, my friends, is the driving factor to build something that can replace the current reality. With the advancements in technology in today’s era, nothing is impossible. Technological science has been a boon to the human race in all real and virtual aspects. One such technological privilege is Augmented Reality. Let’s use etymology to understand a simplified, literal meaning of the term Augmented Reality. If we go by the dictionary, ‘augmented’ means something greater, larger or more powerfully intense. On the other hand, ‘reality’ is a state of existence. Something is said to be real if it persists in the actual environment and is not a mere imaginative notion. Therefore, ‘augmented reality’ is basically a combination of reality and virtuality. It refers to something that is not completely real, but is derived from the real scenario in such a specialised and expanded version that it seems like the reality itself. Now let’s dive into the scientific approach behind augmented reality. Augmented reality is an experience that is highly interactive. Here, the real-world entities are enhanced via stored information that is perceptual and generated using computers. Augmented reality covers all modes of sensory perceptions- auditory perception, visual system, olfaction, somatosensory and haptic perception.

2. History and Origin of Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality is nothing but an enhanced version of the real world entities. It accommodates the use of various inputs that are generated via computers. The inputs can be in the form of images, sounds, graphics, videos etc.

The concept of Augmented Reality first originated in a novel of 1901 by Frank L Baum. It was a mere science-fiction notion and was referred to as a “character marker”. Character marker was a set of glasses that electronically delineated data on people. Unlike the character marker, augmented reality is actually a real concept today.

If we talk about the history of Augmented reality, the concept was discovered much earlier than the coining of the term. In 1957, a cinematographer named Morton Heilig, achieved Augmented reality to some extent. He invented a device that could deliver vibrations, smell, sounds and visuals to the user. He called it the Sensorama. The Sensorama was obviously not controlled by computers, but it is regarded as the first attempt to add additional entities to the real physical world environment.

The term Augmented reality was coined in 1990 by Thomas P Caudell. Louis Rosenberg developed the first fully functional Augmented Reality setup in 1992 at USAF Armstrong’s Research Lab. His setup was a marvellous robotic, complex system named Virtual Fixtures. It was invented in order to indemnify the scarcity of high- speed processing power for 3D graphics.

After 1992, till today, the era of Augmented Reality has witnessed many notable benchmarks such as :

  • The development of ARQuake by Bruce Thomas in 2000. ARQuake was an Augmented Reality empowered outdoor mobile game.
  • The launch of the designing tool, ARToolkit by Adobe Flash in the year 2009.
  • The 2013 announcement of Google Glass, which was an open beta project.
  • The launch of HoloLens in 2015 by Microsoft, marking the company’s support towards the growth of Augmented Reality.

3. Difference between Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality

The prime difference between virtual and augmented reality is that augmented reality is actually the real world with computer-generated added enhancements. On the other hand, in the case of virtual reality, the perception of the user is entirely unreal. For example, a general game that involves racing on streets is a virtual reality game whereas an augmented reality game involves movements and motion in real life along with virtual reality. The most suitable example of an Augmented Reality game is Pokemon Go. This trending game engaged the users by giving them real-life tasks.

In a nutshell, virtual reality is something that does not belong to the real world and augmented reality is a combination of real and virtual worlds that presents the real world in a virtually amplified form.

4. Researchers in the field of Augmented Reality

  • At Harvard University, Ivan Sutherland developed a VR head-mounted display which was the first of its kind.
  • The concept of computer-mediated reality was kept forward by Steve Mann with the use of processors, cameras and display setups in order to enhance dynamic range management. Mann was also an adviser to the augmented reality designing company, Meta.
  • Ronald Azuma is another famous researcher in the field of Augmented reality. He is an author as well as a scientist.
  • In 2009, Dieter Schmalstieg and Daniel Wagner together invented a system of marker tracking in mobiles and PDAs.
  • Jeri Ellsworth is also a famous researcher in this field known for her work in Augmented Reality for the Valve Corporation of America. She carried her research onto her start-up CastAR. However, after the downfall of CastAR, she launched another start-up company named Tilt Five. The company was formed with the motive to create a device to play digital board games.

5. Current and future possibilities with Augmented Reality

We all are aware of the fact that Augmented Reality is here to stay. There are various Augmented Reality possibilities in all the fields at present and in the future and Augmented Reality examples in daily life. Let us take some of these fields into consideration.

To regulate a standard curriculum of studies, Augmented reality is highly helpful in the current and future education. The real-life surroundings of a student can be coincided with computer generated text, videos, audios and graphics. The future generations will study with textbooks with in-built flashcards embedded with markers and QR codes which would be scanned easily and used via an Augmented reality device. Students can get supplements in the form of multimedia.

With the evolution of Augmented reality, young generations can interact with softwares like Google Glass, Construct3D, Chemistry Augmented Reality app, HP Revealts and become active learners. Also, Augmented Reality Event Management has become a new and totally different career option with a lot of scope in the upcoming days.

Nowadays, Augmented reality systems have even crossed the building barriers and are now used as tools to collaborate with urban planning and designing. In the near future, urban planners would prefer Augmented reality tools more than the digital and hand-drawn blueprints. Augmented reality setup can be used to design three-dimensional maps and blueprints of buildings in a table-top view with the smallest of details.

With the help of outdoor augmented reality, ideas and designs can be superimposed onto real-world buildings in order to re-define and re-design the old ones. It will be much easier for urban planners to choose the perfect colour for their building or the perfect design for a mansion, discarding the old, traditional methods of 2D desktop maps and 3D models of the building.

Marketing is among the fields that have been immensely affected by the growth of augmented reality, for good. Sales and marketing customers are always desiring new experiences and amusement but at the same time, convenience. Augmented reality has made it facile for the brands and companies to please their customers with the click of a button. There are numerous Augmented reality events and Augmented reality projects that are running online. Augmented Reality is a two-in-one way to drive sales and enhance your brand value. Brands are wisely using Augmented reality in events allowing their customers to do all sorts of quirky yet fun activities.

In order to increase engagement and advertisement, brands are even giving an opportunity to their consumers to try the products before buying them. Isn’t it amazing that you can test drive a brand new car with a tap on the mobile phone, without even going out on the road!

Augmented reality can be a boon in the aspects of visual art. Visitors can view the beautiful artworks of a museum in a multidimensional manner via their mobile phone screens. Augmented reality can be used to trigger artistic experiences and multidimensional interpretations of the real world. For example, the Museum of Modern Art in New York has created an Augmented reality exhibit that can be accessed with an application on the users’ smartphones. The app is called MoMAR Gallery and it can be downloaded by the users if they wish to take a look at the paintings of the Museum in a totally different way. Some features of the application include visibility of hidden aspects, interaction with artwork, information about the painting etc.

Today, companies and brands are using augmented reality to their aid in all ways. Augmented Reality is used to generate a real-life environment for all the viewers in an online or offline promotional event. Augmented Reality event examples are high on user engagement and interaction. Some brands have also started Augmented Reality live event promotions and advertisements.The business industry has begun to mould with the advancements in technology. Augmented Reality has changed their way of interaction, engagement, attendance, marketing and promotions. Consumer experiences of an event that involves Augmented Reality are proved to be 70% more memorable.

50 Great Augmented Reality ideas for events and promotions

Brands and companies have been using Augmented Reality for nearly a decade now. But, after the advent of the pandemic, the entire business protocol shifted online. All the huge gatherings and physical conferences turned into video calls and Google Meet meetings. Since then, AR based events and promotions have achieved a major boost. According to Forbes, in 2020, the annual growth of AR VR purchases increased nearly 50% in comparison to 2019. The year 2020 witnessed 32% of the consumers who switched to Augmented Reality for shopping, summing up a total turnover of more than 12 billion US dollars!

Listed below are Augmented Reality examples 2020, various Augmented Reality events 2021, AR VR events 2022 and other examples of how different companies used Augmented Reality for promotional events in recent years.

1. Bosch- Augmented Reality Photo booth

The famous multinational company, Bosch reached out to us at GoKapture to engage their employees and attendees via an Augmented reality Photo booth. The users could change backgrounds and click pictures with mere hand gestures.

Book Augmented Reality Photo Booth with GoKapture, now!

2. AirCards- Interstellar Portal
Outside their corporative office, Air Cards created a portal to outer space. The company set forth the fact that with Augmented reality, even sky isn’t the limit.
3. Kinder- Portal experience
Kinder created an amazing and interactive experience for kids in supermarkets. They could activate the AR portal by scanning the QR code on their branded chocolates and directly enter into a virtual safari.
4. Samsung- virtual event
Samsung proved their ingenuity by launching a unique AR experience. Users could scan a QR code and see all the newly launched Samsung products live in their house.
5. Jackson Hogg- Recruiting Event
Jackson Hog hosted a national recruiting event with the use of augmented reality products. The event-goers could view a live introduction by scanning a QR code.
6. Boot Barn- Printed Commercial
Boot Barn launched their brand new fashion line using augmented reality. They played their postcard in an old western video style by merging traditional print marketing with commercial marketing.
7. Hewlett Packard- Enterprise Product Launch
HP launched their product in a virtual mode and used Augmented reality to give the great news to their employees and existing clients. They turned the launch into a fun and informative experience.
8.The Motley Fool- Choose Your Retirement
Motley Fool launched a postcard that turned into a portal to the future. It was a smart move by the company in order to advertise their retirement plans.
9. Alnwick Garden- AR Brochure

Alnwick Garden prepared an AR brochure to display their offerings to the visitors. The brochure shows butterflies flitting and waterfall cascading, it feels more than real.

10. Vodafone- Unwrap lunch on us
Vodafone used web based augmented reality to transform their regular print marketing into an interactive session. They said that the stomach is the way to people’s hearts.
11. Dell Technologies- Live Event
The cancellation of their international conference helped Dell technologies to try their hands on augmented reality. They put up a live conference experience from the comfort of people’s homes.
12. Bon V!V- OOH Campaign

Bon V!V took their extraordinary use of AR to the streets. As a part of their marketing campaign, they transformed the city walls into a virtual vending machine that distributed their yummy Spiked Seltzer.

13. Nutanix- Virtual Event Space
Making full use of the pandemic as well as Augmented reality, Nutanix launched their virtual expo booth. The virtual event broke all barriers and could be accessed anywhere.
14. Pot Noodle- Careers Fair
Careers fair was actually an offline live event, but, because of the pandemic, they had to launch the fair virtually. Pot Noodle delivered a wonderful event in collaboration with Gradbay.
15. Google Pixel- Star Wars stickers
Taking inspiration from Pokemon Go, Google added an AR feature in their Pixel mobile phone cameras. The feature enables users to add AR stickers to pictures and videos.
16. Intel- Innovative Press Conference at CES 2017
In CES 2017, Intel gave an opportunity to their users to try their hardware products via virtual reality. They turned the traditional lecture-based conference into a wonderful hands-on experience.
17. Ford- Virtual reality peek
Ford’s tech has given an exclusive VR peek into their new models. Through the magical use of Augmented reality, the cars appeared transparent and the interior features were visible.
18. Mercedes- Immersive Mountaintop Adventure
Advertisement of brands as big as Mercedes is nothing but flaunting their luxury for people to get carried away and spend money on their products. The brand showed the 360 degrees view of the mountain adventure of one of the car owners.
19. Patron- Virtual Reality Behind the Scenes Experience
The famous liquor brand played smart and connected with their customers emotionally. They added brand storytelling elements to their virtual reality content.


From the above case studies, it is evident that the AR Photo Booth is an incredibly versatile tool in the hands of businesses and event organizers alike. Augmented Reality is a technology that is rooted in the prioritization of a seamless, interactive user experience that thins the lines between the real world and the perceived, the threshold at which new kind of innovation begins.

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