Augmented reality isn’t anything new. There’ve been a number of augmented reality applications available for smartphones and other devices for a long time. Typically, these augmented reality applications are things that overlay some sort of gaming content over the real-world environment around you.
A company called ReinCloud has recently shown off a very interesting augmented reality TV platform called ARGTV. The application won first-place overall in the TV Hackfest competition recently. According to the CEO of the company, the TV platform would do things like allow a viewer to share a drink with Don Draper from Mad Men.
Using the company’s ARGTV platform you would be able to pick up a virtual bottle of gin like the one being poured on TV and examine it from all angles. You can turn the bottle around and read the label on the back if you wanted to. Users would even be able to purchase an actual bottle of liquor using the TV platform without having to use your phone or turn the TV channel.
This sounds like a very interesting way to improve the interactivity with TV advertising to me. The company expects to ship its ARGTV product in Q3 of 2013. However, that ship date is far from guaranteed at this point because the product has to be fully funded. There’s no indication that the platform is seeking funding via Kickstarter or another crowd sourced funding service.