Augmented Reality – Phoenix of Print?

Classic print producers have to make a greater effort the last years, because of the internet and all these new online technologies. But Augmented Reality has the potential to get the traditional print world ready for the future.

augmented reality

Printed magazines, newspapers and the book industry have to make a greater effort since the internet makes information available 24/7 from nearly everywhere in the world. There are many voices saying that the classic print products will be gone in the future. But modern technology, especially digitalization, is not an enemy of print in general. New technologies and advances in printing had a massive effect on magazines and newspapers in the past. So why should it be an unstoppable cradle to the grave?

Print Goes 21th Century

Augmented Reality could be the answer to that question. During the last years AR has come up to nearly every aspect of modern media, and it is still evolving. There will be lots of new advances and usages of this technology for sure and print can benefit from it. An implementation of AR in classic print could be a whole new thing and create a reborn of print. AR has the great advantage not to be bound to common physical limitations. There is no limit of word counts or layout space. You can even leave the two-dimensionality of printed products. So AR could be a bridge between the classic prints and the digital sphere. Nevertheless, AR has its own borders – you need devices like a smartphone to use it. Therefore the content must have a minimum quality, furthermore there has to be a new standard of content, which will provide the user with a really outstanding experience.

Storytelling is Everything

Next to high-quality content there will be a need of innovative and effective motivation to use AR. The whole thing has to be so irresistible that the users find the more effort worth. Or in other words: The reader has to think, that the storytelling is incomplete without the AR experience. In 2016, for example, the New Yorker provided its readers with a 3D subway tour through the city. All you had to do was to install an app and then scan the cover’s subway doors. AR has to create more than just the average amusement or information. It has to go deeper into the story and allow the reader to feel like becoming part of the plot. Videos in a novel, interview snippets in a long informational story, complex 3D explanations based on maps and charts – the possibilities are endless.

Rise of The Phoenix?

The print world has to evolve along with the digitally society. AR and other similar technologies, too, can be guides to create a new, modern print world, with all these fascinating experiences, digitalization offers publishers, advertisers, and printers alike.

So what’s your opinion towards the future of classic prints? Can new technologies like AR really support or will they replace them? Discuss with us in the comment section!