This bit goes there: VW and Metaio show off what AR can do for car service technicians

The German augmented reality company Metaio has had a few high-profile demonstrations of its technology recently, notably Ikea’s new catalog app, which lets you superimpose furniture over a view of your living room.

Well, here’s another one. Following hot on the heels of Audi’s new Metaio-enabled car manual app, here’s a demo of Mobile Augmented Reality Technical Assistance (MARTA), an app that’s designed to help service technicians muck about with Volkswagen’s new 2014 XL1 concept car:


As you can see, MARTA shows technicians what each component is, while displaying 3D animations that demonstrate maintenance instructions. All XL1 service stations across Europe will use it.

I love this stuff, mainly because I was getting a bit worried that augmented reality (AR) was doomed to be little more than a marketing gimmick – think magazine ads that “come to life” when (for reasons unknown) you wave your phone over them. It may never be the straightforward consumer play that it once promised to be, but AR does seem to be allowing genuine new use cases within specific niches.