Porn has always pushed the edges of technology, from VHS videotapes to virtual reality. And now it may also push the envelope for augmented reality (AR).
ARConk , an AR porn service, debuted recently, giving consumers the ability to place animated porn stars in the real world. It remains to be seen if this kind of push will be welcome or popular, and if it will make the dreams of multibillion-dollar AR application markets come true.
Augmented reality allows creators to put animated overlays on the real world, enhancing the real world with additional information or, in the case of AR porn, imaginary objects that look like they fit in the real world. ARConk and Laidhub say they have solved the technical challenges around inserting animated objects into video landscapes. The ARConk app is available on Android now, and the companies are working on an iOS version.
ARConk has been cooperating with the owners of the porn site Laidhub, to together establish a realistic AR porn experience. Honestly, as you can see from looking at the video, this is a pretty hard task. The animated human doesn’t quite look real yet, even if it does look like it fits well into the real world environment. Still, the companies argue that they have put a lot of work into this already, and getting the human to look like it fits is a technical achievement.
“It is pretty refreshing to introduce something as the very first ones in the world, but we have paid for this success with a lot of hard work,” said Adam Gecko, the owner of the Look Forward company and ARConk, in a statement. “Together with guys from Laidhub.com, we have managed to do something that many people kept dreaming about, and we are really proud of our innovation. Naturally, we are aware that many companies had tried that in the past, but only succeeded with some animated AR porn – which means that our experience is the very first real AR porn in the history.”
VR porn has become popular, almost as much as gaming in VR. But it has fallen short of expectations so far. SexLikeReal said it analyzed the July 6 leak on Steam games as well as its own data on porn revenues to come up with the analysis. It found that 481 VR games released since 2016 have generated $50 million in sales, and it found that 6,000 VR videos released to date have also generated about $50 million in revenues. If you add revenues from PlayStation VR and Oculus Home, game VR revenues top $130 million.
Above: ARConk and Laidhub have created AR porn animations.
Image Credit: ARConk/Laidhub
This data clearly show that VR games and VR porn are the biggest consumer markets and thus the key drivers of virtual reality, SexLikeReal said. In many ways, that’s no surprise since games and porn have reportedly driven sales of many consumer electronics products, going back to the video cassette recorder and the first personal computers. But expectations have been high, perhaps too high.
The companies argue that content in augmented reality can be more futuristic, particularly as it approaches the realism of holograms.
“It is actually funny, but few large AR companies have already contacted us and asked us how we did this,” said Daniel Abramovich, the CEO of Laidhub.com, in a statement. “We have spent way too much money, time and resources to make it happen, though, and we are not going to reveal any of our secrets. This has been a long [trial and error process] and we are more than happy that it has finally paid off and that it is actually working.”
In an email, Abramovich said the hardest part was volumetric post production work.
Since the application is fully operable and the producers have everything they need to start making their AR porn content on a larger scale, the companies said it is only a matter of time before AR porn films start showing up. Wit this technology, the makers can scan a person into the world to create a lifelike and fully interactive experience inside of their augmented reality environment.
“We did some tests and people are actually fascinated about the capabilities of our AR tech,” said Jerome Balzac, the developer of the ARConk app, in a statement. “Right now we came up with two unique AR experiences: one of them is just a 3D scan of a girl; and the other one is a real and fully interactive 3D AR video of a sexy pornstar. It pretty much means that you can walk around her, watch her from every angle, get closer (or further) to/from her.”
The ARConk user does not have to have an expensive Magic Leap or Microsoft HoloLens AR headset to watch these encounters. You can view via a Holokit AR Cardboard, which is a really budget-friendly solution. Or you can use a modern smartphone.
“Yes, AR might be still a bit far, and the entire technology is still catching up, but we really want to be ready for the future,” Gecko said. “Soon enough more and more people should be involved in this tech, so we need to be as proactive as possible and try to be a one step ahead as far as we can. We believe that in the future, when other companies will get to our level, we will already have a large variety of different experiences waiting for our followers, and that is why the early stage of the ARConk project is so important.”