Virtual and augmented reality technologies have known an impressive market evolution due to their potential to provide immersive experiences. However, they still have significant difficulties to enable fully fledged, consumer-ready applications that can handle complex tasks such as multi-user collaboration or time-persistent experiences. In this context, CultReal is a rapid creation and deployment platform for augmented reality (AR), aiming to revitalize cultural spaces. The platform’s content management system stores a representation of the environment, together with a database of multimedia objects that can be associated with a location. The localization component fuses data from beacons and from video cameras, providing an accurate estimation of the position and orientation of the visitor’s smartphone. A mobile application running the localization component displays the augmented content, which is seamlessly integrated with the real world. The paper focuses on the series of steps required to compute the position and orientation of the user’s mobile device, providing a comprehensive evaluation with both virtual and real data. Pilot implementations of the system are also described in the paper, revealing the potential of the platform to enable rapid deployment in new cultural spaces. Offering these functionalities, CultReal will allow for the fast development of AR solutions in any location.
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