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By Joseph Hwangbo on July 25, 2016


Augmented reality (AR) is evolving the way we communicate our ideas to the people we work with on various types of AEC projects. You’ve probably already experienced the pitfalls of miscommunication on a project and the negative impacts it can have. AR provides three-dimensional information that can be directly applied on or used in conjunction with 2D information. This is helping to make the communication process easier and more accurate leading to better efficiency and cost savings for AEC projects.

AR is beginning to introduce a new level of certainty for the design and construction process as well. For a collaborative meeting or presentation in order to solicit stakeholder engagement, AR is becoming a strong alternative. If you are looking to improve the process for your next AEC project, here are three tools that you can incorporate through AR:

One of the most popular tools being used is the Augment app. This app allows anyone to upload a 3D model to its library that activates it to AR when scanned through the app. It also allows users to understand and experience their models from a different perspective. A three-dimensional model pops out from the floor plan that was uploaded and gives you the 3D experience of that building. What makes this tool unique is the capability to experience the model as you move your device around it, which then changes your view of it accordingly. This app can be used on either Android or iOS smartphones



The SmartReality app is similar to Augment but adds the ability to use virtual reality (VR). It is designed specifically for the AEC sector and works with various 3D software programs that are staples in the industry, such as Autodesk’s Revit. The addition of VR capability is a unique feature since it will not only allow you to implement 2D plans to create interactive 3D models, but takes it one step further through VR in helping stakeholders get a more full experience of the model.



Formerly known as Visidraft, Pair is another app specifically created for the AEC industry. It is compatible with industry software such as AutoCAD, Revit, 3DS Max, Sketchup, Vectorworks, and ArchiCAD. It differs from Augment and SmartReality in that no 2D information is scanned. Instead, 3D models are created through the camera of a phone/tablet which allows real-time viewing of objects within an existing space. This gives you the power to show an existing space and virtually apply the finishes and furniture through the app while at the same time exploring the space from multiple angles.

AR also has its uses beyond visualization. Think of how it can lead to a design analysis that can pick out clashes by doing a virtual walk through of your completed model. Think of the constructability review and by using AR how letting the architect and contractor collaborate on changes can happen between the design and construction phases. AR also has a role to play in pre-fabrication of building components. By exploring the technology of AR, you might be able to solve many challenges that you face on AEC projects.

So take the leap into the AR space and see how it can help create a better and more efficient process for your next big AEC project.

Article: http://www.revitcommunity.com/feature_full.php?cpfeatureid=116901