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Apple's working on an AR app that's being tested at Apple Stores, Starbucks

AR on iPhone
AR on iPhone (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple continues to focus on ways to make use of augmented reality.
  • A new AR app is reportedly in the works for iOS 14.
  • It'll tie into Apple Stores and even Starbucks.

We're seeing tons of new leaks regarding iOS 14 and what Apple has in store for us this year, with the latest centering on one of Apple's favorite things – augmented reality. According to a new report, there's a hot new app coming down the pike, and it's going to make your next visit to an Apple Store pretty great. The same goes for Starbucks, too.

The new app is currently codenamed Gobi and it is claimed that it will allow users to take the world around them and then add content over the top of it. It's the classic augmented reality play, but it could make for some interesting uses.

Based on 9to5Mac code findings, Apple appears to be testing integrations with Apple Stores and Starbucks. For instance, users would be able to hold up their phone in an Apple Store and view information about the products on display, get pricing, and compare features.

Third-party apps will also be able to take advantage of similar functionality via an SDK or API, presumably, although it's impossible to know for sure right now.

Apple has made a big deal about AR in recent years, often showing lengthy – and often boring – demonstrations during WWDC keynotes and media events. It's no surprise that the company is seeking to push on in that regard, although it's still debatable how mainstream AR apps will be.

We're seeing more and more iOS 14 details leak this week, so it's possible more color will be added to this story as time marches on.

Oliver Haslam
Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.