Whenever I visit a museum, my first thought is to look for an experienced guide who will help me appreciate the exhibits in a museum. Have I been lucky, not always. The fact is museums these days do not have many guides as they seem to have a hard time finding people with adequate experience, interest, enthusiasm and knowledge.
Good museum guides often do a fantastic job of providing interesting snippets about the artefacts there and making the museum tour enjoyable and memorable. They delve into the history, politics and interesting anecdotes about the artefacts there. The reality, however, is quite bleak for getting good guides, and museums have resorted to using devices such as audio guides that are typically available on loan at the museum reception or ticket counter.
I can affirm that the experience of using these guides is not so great as the headset sound quality is not great, and one has to check the exhibit number, type it in and listen to the audio clip. The enthusiasm is lost after a few tries, and we make it through most of the museum unaided.
Augmented Reality is changing that museum visitor experience simply with the installation of a museum AR app on your smartphone or tablet. Using these technologies in museums has led to the advent of interactive museums delivering quality visitors experience.
The application uses beacons that sense your correct location in the museum and turn your attention to the most interesting exhibits. This is akin to a real-life guide directing your attention to what must not be missed. The audio stream provides a stream of information about the exhibit and how it made it to the museum. The exhibit, when seen through an application, begins to overlay interesting visual information and data about the exhibit.
It could also generate a 3D model of the exhibit, allowing you to view it from all angles and improve the overall appreciation of the exhibit. Furthermore, it allows the visitor to take pictures and enables sharing through social media with the community of friends and family.
The AR museum experience is special to each visitor and allows them to take part in it with them. Augmented reality in museums has definitely made the museum experiences more interactive. There are museums where exhibits come alive through the AR app.
We may not have seen the dinosaurs or the prehistoric animals move. Augmented reality enables kids to see and enrich their knowledge of the past. This technology is far more engaging than anything we’ve had till now. The overall experience can be personalised as well, allowing you to prioritise based on your interests and availability of time.
The whole museum experience can be gamified to make a visit even more memorable. The digital generation loves such enhancements as it makes what was traditionally considered a dull event more exciting and memorable. Augmented Reality is not limited to just museums. They are increasingly used along with virtual reality in corporate experience centres.
With smartphones in everybody’s hands, the future of the museum experience is promising to be enhanced with multiple AR experience centres expected in traditional museums. Fusion VR is at the forefront of the AR museum revolution in India. A peek into our amazing website is highly recommended.