One of the most successful rock bands still making music has just made augmented reality an integral part of its upcoming tour. Irish rock band U2 has announced a new mobile app experience that allows you to preview the group's live performance in your own home in AR.
To experience the AR performance, you simply download the free U2 eXPERIENCE app for iOS or Android, then point your smartphone's camera at the band's new Songs of Experience album cover. If you don't have a physical copy of the album, you can easily find the album cover image on the group's online store.
Once the app recognizes the album cover image, the image transforms into an AR object and then dissolves as it's replaced by a singing, virtual Bono (the lead singer of the group).
It's not the most amazing AR experience in terms of what's already available on your smartphone, but it immediately transports the four-decade-old group into the future of immersive entertainment.
Image by Adario Strange/Next Reality
Oddly, although the app has a built-in function to allow you to save photos of the AR experience, the app doesn't allow you to record video of the AR animations (you can use screen record on your iOS device for that).
The band is also promising an additional live AR component that will be available to fans who bring the app to live U2 tour shows. Once fans get to the venue, they'll find a 100-foot-long LED wall with images that will serve as the triggers for a massive AR experience via their smartphones.
Most of us will probably just get our dose of U2 in AR at home, but for the hardcore fans looking to see the next level of the band's immersive performance, the tourkicks off next week in Tulsa, Oklahoma.