Lenovo has unveiled its PHAB2 Pro, the world's first Tango-enabled smartphone designed to deliver augmented reality (AR) experiences.
The PHAB2 Pro represents a game-changer in the smartphone market. It features Tango technology, which consists of sensors and software from Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) that sense and map their surroundings, to make AR experiences a reality for end users.
"Tango enables our devices to sense physical motion and space and, as a result, has the power to change how we interact with our surroundings. We believe that devices with positional tracking functionality will be pervasive and are happy that the PHAB2 Pro will introduces these new capabilities, making your phone even more useful," Google Engineering Director Johnny Lee said in a prepared statement.
So what does the PHAB2 Pro mean for mobile developers? At this point, not a whole lot.
AR represents a great opportunity for developers, one that could deliver significant revenue growth for developers down the line. But in the short-term, developers may need to see the value of creating AR apps before they consider Tango development.
Fortunately, Lenovo has already introduced a number of real-world applications for its PHAB2 Pro. These applications highlight the value of AR and could help the PHAB2 Pro generate interest from both consumers and developers worldwide.
Let's not forget about the PHAB2 Pro's competitive price, either.
The smartphone, which is scheduled to be released worldwide in September, will start at $199 for the PHAB2, $299 for the PHAB2 Plus and $499 for the PHAB2 Pro. Thus, the smartphone's price is on par with many smartphones that are already on the market, which could make this device a popular choice for those who want to experience AR.
Lastly, the AR market is expected to grow, which may lead many developers to consider AR apps for Tango-enabled devices and other gadgets over the next several years.
But until developers see consumers' responses to the PHAB2 Pro and other AR-enabled devices, it may be some time before the majority of developers embrace the opportunity to design and deploy AR apps. -- Dan