Back in March, Google released an app called “Just a Line” as part of its slew of new ARCore 1.0 apps. On Wednesday, May 30, the company not only launched a version for the iPhone but introduced a new collaborative feature for both Android and iOS.
If you already couldn’t tell by its name, Just a Line is super simple and also fun. The app essentially lets you bring drawings to life. Using the camera, simply point at the area where you’d like to draw and press your finger on your smartphone screen to begin doodling. After you’re done, you can then walk around to see it from various angles.
The app is extremely reminiscent of Google’s Tilt Brush virtual reality app, which allows users to paint in a 3D space. But the app was only available on expensive VR devices, which makes Just a Line far more accessible.
Since the app was initially launched in conjunction with Google’s ARCore, it’s only been available for compatible Android devices. But iPhone users can now get in on the fun as well, by downloading the iOS version via the App Store. For both iOS and Android, users will also get to try a new feature that lets you simultaneously create together in augmented reality across both platforms.
To start, place both phones side-by-side and tap the partner icon. Once both phones are connected, you and your partner are able to see and add to the same drawing in real-time.
The collaborative experienced is powered specifically by “Cloud Anchors” which was introduced at this year’s annual Google I/O developer conference. It allows developers to create these types of AR experiences through the cloud regardless of whether you’re on Android or iOS.
At the conference, Google made a demo app called Lightboard where two people are able to shoot paintballs at each other. The point of the game is to cover an area with as much color as possible. We were able to play the game successfully between an Android phone and iPhone in seconds.
Even though Google only recently launched its new framework for augmented reality apps on Android, there are already tons of ARCore-based apps available on the Google Play Store. Ranging from Pottery Barn 3D Room View where you can virtually try furniture in your home, to My Tamagotchi Forever where you get to raise your own Tamagotchi, ARCore apps are available for a variety of categories.