SDK releases

Wikitude SDK 8.9: support for iOS 13 and Android 10

Augmented reality apps based on Wikitude can now take full advantage of iOS 13 and Android 10 with SDK 8.9. 

Good news: our augmented reality SDK is ready for both Android 10 and iOS 13 changes! Wikitude developers can benefit from Apple’s and Google’s OS updates as of today.

SDK 8.9 includes:

  • Support for iOS 13 and Android 10
  • UIWebView deprecation
  • Wikitude SDK accessibility via Maven (Android only)

Support for Apple iOS 13 and Android 10

In the past weeks, our development team has been digging deep into the public beta versions of the new Android 10 and iOS 13. With the official release of Android and Apple’s new version of their OSs, we’re excited to share that SDK 8.9 is fully compatible with both operating systems. 

The official release of iOS 13 last week raised lots of excitement from the developer crowd.

The new OS and ARKit updates indicate that augmented reality remains key to Apple’s strategy for the upcoming years. The video below shows what’s in for Apple and AR in 2019.

iOS 13 will be available on iPhone 6s or later versions. Here’s a full list of confirmed devices that can run Apple’s latest OS. 

Android aficionados also get to enjoy the latest and greatest of Android 10 with SDK 8.9. And just because Google dropped its dessert naming scheme, it doesn’t mean we don’t have sweet news for AR devs. 

Adaptive battery improvements will largely benefit the use of AR apps and recent updates on Google Play Services for AR (former ARCore) helps your app stick AR content into the world with Cloud Anchors. Also, a few additional devices will now have access to Google’s AR services. 

Curious when your phone will get Android 10? Well, you might need some patience depending on the devices you work with…

Source: Google Developers blog

Skip double coding with SMART

If you can’t wait to make your AR apps compatible with these new OSs here’s how Wikitude can make your life easier: use our SMART feature.

Seamless AR Tracking (SMART) allows you to work with ARKit and ARCore under a single API. Yes, you read that right – it means no double coding needed. Learn how this feature can save you time (and money) when building your AR apps.

UIWebView deprecation

Starting with iOS 8, Apple replaced the UIWebView component with its own WebKit-enabled WebView (WKWebView) to add web content to apps. A web view component has always been a core part of the Wikitude SDK rendering HTML content as part of our JavaScript product. 

With iOS 13 changes, Apple has recently started to issue warnings to developers who try to submit an app to the App Store that includes code referencing UIWebView. This is a breaking change for iOS apps. 

Given the move from the App Store team, Wikitude SDK 8.9 for iOS now ships without UIWebView, so our SDK users can easily comply with those regulations. 

All customers are strongly recommended to upgrade their iOS apps to avoid any issues with Apple’s new regulation. Customers holding an active Wikitude SDK subscription are entitled to a free upgrade. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to our team.

Wikitude SDK now accessible via Maven 

Updating the Wikitude SDK just became easier for Android developers. With this release, you can access the latest version of Wikitude’s technology through Maven straight from Android Studio. 

If you’re just getting started with Android development, Maven is an established dependency package manager used widely in Java-based projects. Its purpose is to simplify builds of your application, especially when using third-party libraries. 

Traditionally, the Wikitude SDK is available as a downloadable package, which included the actual Java libraries as .aar and .jar. With this new flow using Maven, developers will be able to update the SDK version number in one configuration file (build.gradle).

Wikitude provides files for JavaScript API, Native API, and Vuzix for now. See details on how to set up the Maven repository

Download Wikitude SDK 8.9

Active Wikitude SDK subscribers are entitled to all SDK version updates released throughout their term. Follow the links below to update your AR SDK:

New to Wikitude? Download a free Wikitude SDK 8.9 trial version for testing purposes or contact our team to discuss your upgrade possibilities.

To explore all SDK options, including smart glasses, plugins, and other dev tools, please access our download page:

Interested in creating an AR project of your own? Access our store to choose your package or contact our team to discuss your specific AR requirements.

SDK releases

Android 7.0 and iOS 10 – Our Augmented Reality SDK is Ready!

Update (August 2017): Object recognition, multi-target tracking and SLAM based instant tracking: Track the world with SDK 7

In the past weeks our development team has been digging deep into public beta versions of the new iOS 10 and Android 7.0 Nougat. With yesterday’s official release of Android’s new version of the OS, we wanted to make a quick summary for our dev community of the main changes and let you know we have an SDK update coming up soon.

So starting with the good news: our augmented reality SDK is ready for both Android 7.0 and iOS 10 changes! We are happy to announce we are in final stages of building our upcoming SDK 5.3, that will be fully compatible with both operating systems.

Android 7.0 Nougat

Android 7.0 Nougat was released yesterday, slightly ahead of schedule, and it came with a couple of new features that got us, AR developers, excited. Here are our highlights:

  • Vulkan API support – when it comes to 3D rendering APIs, Vulkan is an awesome-to-have. This is a low level API that gives direct access of the GPU to developers, allowing high-performance 3D graphics like we’ve never seen before. So get ready for some eye-candy AR games!
  • New JIT (Just in Time) compiler – this will allow faster compilation and reduce the size of apps. Improved performance by this new compiler will make the building process of Android-based AR apps much faster and intuitive.Android-Nougat (1)
  • Doze battery saver – introduced already on Marshmallow last year, Doze is Android’s battery-saving feature that shuts apps down once you are done with them. No real news here, but the more battery we have for AR experiences, the better!
  • VR mode – coming later this year, Nougat will make apps VR-friendly with their Daydream, Google’s upcoming VR platform.
  • Window split mode: Apps based on Android 7.0 can make use of the new split screen feature.
Right now, Nougat is only available for recent Nexus device owners (Nexus 6, 6P, 5X, Pixel C, or Nexus 9 tablet). For everyone else, there’s still some waiting time ahead for the over-the-air update.
To summarize: overall this update will bring more opportunities to build faster nice looking AR experiences in less “heavy” apps.

A word on iOS 10

You probably have heard that Apple is working on some kind of AR project behind the scenes and that we can expect something awesome some time in the future. Tim Cook himself confirmed that AR is “…extremely interesting and sort of a core technology”. Self-driving cars or AR headset, fact is Apple’s new iOS 10 doesn’t give us much to what direction the company is going with this technology.

Apple’s new OS, just like Google’s, revolves around improved messaging systems, new emojis, heavy machine learning for images and building a smarter home with IoT. Also, making Siri accessible through apps, which is kind of neat if you would ask us.

Apple's CEO - Tim Cook
Rumor has it that iOS 10 will be officially released in about a month. Several public beta version have been around since the beginning July and our team has explored it inside out. So far, no sign of any feature that will make AR devs be on cloud 9. 

Wikitude SDK 5.3

We’re excited about the new features Android Nougat and iOS 10 bring and can’t wait to reveal our fully compatible Wikitude SDK 5.3 in the next days. The release will be available for Wikitude SDK JavaScript API, Native API and all extensions including Unity. The later will see some more features as well.
What you can expect? Improved performance, faster building time for your AR apps and an awesome new feature to those already working with our Plugins API feature.

Download Wikitude SDK

Dev to Dev

3D Tracking for large-scale scenes

Update (August 2017): Object recognition, multi-target tracking and SLAM: Track the world with SDK 7

As part of our mission to keep augmenting the world around us, our tech team has been extending the capabilities of our 3D tracking. We started simple with the first public beta version of this feature a few months back, recognizing and tracking small-scale spaces. As things progress very quickly, Wikitude’s computer vision team is taking a step forward to track and map bigger environments or “large-scale” scenes as we like to call it.

In this post we will provide an insight on Wikitude’s 3D tracking technology, share our next move on the 3D tracking road and provide a hands on demo of our large scale feature, the WikiWings app for Android.

The Wikitude cross-platform 3D Tracking technology

Tracking objects and environments in 3D is a complex task. Particularly if this is done without depth sensors and by using just a single front facing the camera as found in the majority of smartphones out there today. We, humans, are actually at an advantage as we are equipped with two eyes (cameras) for sensing depth and understanding the third dimension.

The Wikitude team has been working tirelessly in the past three years with the aim to create a common base for recognizing and tracking three-dimensional objects, structures, and spaces. The market requirements range from being able to recognize objects of a few centimeters in size up to positioning a device in a sequence of rooms and corridors stretching several 100s of meters. There is no “one” computer vision algorithm out there that can support this broad set of requirements and use cases – yet. As the pioneer in the mobile augmented reality industry with a razor sharp focus on technology only, we will continue to address the demand for varying “flavours” of 3D recognition and tracking. The result of this approach is a strong common core for 3D tracking, which serves as the common base for a number of use cases.

The Wikitude 3D Tracking engine

In the past weeks, another building block of our 3D tracking has evolved, and today we are excited to share with you the second part of our journey to map and track the world around us.

From “small-scale” to “large-scale”

Wikitude’s first 3D tracking beta released a couple of months ago was the initial public release for mapping and tracking objects and environments on a small scale, such as an office desk for example, as previously described in our blog. We have gathered feedback from our developer community in the past weeks and worked on an updated version of our small-scale 3D tracking. Interested developers can request our updated (December 1st, 2015) version of the beta on our 3D tracking page feature page.

As a next step, we are preparing our next public releases for tracking and mapping larger indoor spaces to navigate users, display augmentations in rooms or show points of interest inside buildings.

To demonstrate the basics of our large scale 3D tracking feature already, our development team took the Wikitude office as an initial test environment. The video below is a first hands-on example of the current capabilities of our SLAM based 3D tracking applied to indoor navigation and localization.

The first step of the above demo is to identify objects and physical structures of the room that will provide key feature points to be tracked. As the user moves around, feature points are captured and become the base for the forming map on the device, see the box in the bottom right corner on the device in the video above. Once the algorithm has tracked key features of our office, it’s time to augment the scene! In the technical demo, we demonstrate a simple augmentation of an animated 3D model using our Native iOS SDK.

Large scale in action: use cases with the Wikitude 3D tracking

The demand for technology that “understands” and enhances the larger spaces around us inside of shopping malls, public buildings, airports, train stations etc. is tremendous. Often times we wonder what’s the shortest way to a departure gate inside of airports and train stations, where we can get the best deals in large shopping malls or find the nearest Starbucks, or locate a piece of machinery on complex industrial sites, even indoor gaming is frequently being requested for. Here are some of the many use cases where the Wikitude 3D tracking can be applied.

Mockup 3D Tracking LivingRoom

One of the coolest applications of our large scale 3D tracking is the ability to make rooms highly interactive. This feature allows users to hunt for flying dragons in your living room, fight living creatures in your kitchen or follow an alien in a shopping mall. Any room can become the scene of your game!



What if we could see a design idea of a building structure in real time? Or plan industrial spaces before a single brick is being moved? Architects can use Wikitude’s large scale 3D tracking to display their plans on their client’s tablet, helping them easily visualise what things will look like upon completion of the project.


Indoor navigation (proof of concept)Indoor navigation - augmented reality app

Tracking and mapping indoor spaces enables powerful indoor navigation. Locating deals in the maze of big shopping centers, leading passengers to their boarding gates inside of airports are only the beginning.



Check out WikiWings, Wikitude’s large-scale demo app

The Wikitude large-scale capabilities will be available in our SDK soon, however, you can get an early taste of it already by downloading the WikiWings demo app for Android.

wikiwings logo

Screenshot 3d tracking app

(We have already shot quite a number of dragons at our office ;)

Update (August 2017): Start developing with Wikitude SDK 7

Getting started with SDK 7 has never been easier! Here’s how:

Help us spread the news on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin using the hashtag #Wikitude.

AR features

Wikitude 3D Tracking (Instant Tracking)

2020 Update: Wikitude SDK now supports 3D tracking, Object tracking and 3D Model as input method (CAD). Learn more.

With this post, we are opening a new chapter on Wikitude’s journey towards augmenting the world! We are happy to share today the first version of the all new Wikitude 3D tracking technology. For our team, augmenting rooms, spaces, and objects around us is a natural progress after mastering augmentations on 2D surfaces. Clearly, tracking in 3D is a much more complex task as algorithms must be optimized for a variety of use cases and different conditions. With this release of our 3D tracking technology, developers will be able to map areas and objects of a rather small scale and place 3D content into the scene.

This is the first step of a sequence of releases Wikitude will roll out as our SLAM based 3D recognition and tracking technology evolves. The 3D tracking (instant tracking) feature is now available as a free trial and packaged in our SDK PRO products. This feature is currently available for the SDK 5 Native APIs only.

How does Wikitude 3D tracking work?

The Wikitude SDK tracks 3D scenes by identifying feature points of objects and environments. By identifying feature-rich environments, the SDK will map the scene by displaying a point cloud over the different feature points.
As an example of how the Wikitude 3D tracking works in a small scene, we will use the scenario of an office table. The richer the scene is equipped with feature points, the better the mapping and tracking will be.


In order to track and map the scene the following steps should be taken:

  1. Launch the Wikitude sample app, which is included in the Native SDK (iOS and Android) download package
  2. Record a tracking map by slowly moving the device from one side to the other of the scene, covering the whole area
  3. 3D point clouds will appear on the screen capturing key feature points of the scenario
  4. Save the tracking map
  5. Load the map in your augmented reality experience to relocalize the scene and visualize the augmentation in real time.

    Download 3D Tracking Trial!

The video below demonstrates the above described steps.

Important note: It is not possible to use both 2D and 3D tracking within one experience. If you use 3D tracking, recognition, and tracking of 2D markers will not be launched.

Developers can now try the Wikitude 3D tracking together with the SDK 5 free trial. A trial key that has been generated on Oct 15 2015 or later is required. License keys prior to that will show a warning Unlicensed feature when you try to use 3D tracking. If you generated a license key earlier than October 15th, just revisit the license page and a new key will be automatically generated.

The Wikitude 3D Tracking is included in the Native SDK download packages for iOS and Android. In our documentation section you can find all details of this new cross-platform technology and follow the step-by-step set up guide to get started (Android, iOS). We can’t wait to get your feedback and are happy to answer questions you have at or in our developer forum.

And before we close this post, here is a sneak peek of what is coming next! Subscribe to our newsletter and stay tuned to our developments on our dedicated SLAM page.

Update 2017: 3D Instant Tracking now available for Multiple Platforms and Development Frameworks

The Wikitude SDK is available for both Android and iOS devices, as well as a number of leading augmented reality smart glasses.
Developers can choose from a wide selection of AR development frameworks, including Native API, JavaScript API or any of the supported extensions and plugins available.

Among the extensions based on Wikitude’s JavaScript API are Cordova (PhoneGap), Xamarin and Titanium. These extensions include the same features available in the JS API, such as location-based AR, image recognition and tracking and SLAM.
Unity is the sole plugin based on the Wikitude Native SDK and includes image recognition and tracking, SLAM, as well as a plugin API, which allows you to connect the Wikitude SDK to third-party libraries.