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National Taiwan Museum introduces AR tour guide
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The National Taiwan Museum yesterday introduced an augmented reality (AR) museum guide for its Natural History Branch in Taipei’s Zhongzheng District.

The AR Museum Guide was jointly developed by the museum, the Ministry of Economic Affairs’ Industrial Development Bureau, Arplanet Digital Technology Co and Mr Fossil, the museum said.

With the guide, they hope to promote the development of the nation’s AR industry, it said.

It is the first time a museum in Taiwan has used an AR indoor positioning system to bring ancient organisms and fossils “back to life,” the museum said.

The AR technology has not only made the exhibits at the museum more lifelike, but also allows visitors to interact with them, providing more possibilities for popular science education, it said.

In the past, museum displays tended to be static, but due to the influence of electronic devices, museums worldwide have seen visitor numbers gradually decrease, museum director Hung Shih-yu said.

To attract more visitors, the museum has over the past few years been committed to offering interactive shows, he said.

The launch of its AR guide is just the beginning, he said, adding that he believes in the future, and as technology becomes more sophisticated, museum visitors will have even more lively interactive experiences.

Describing the AR guide as trendsetting, Lin Chun-hsiu, a bureau representative, said that he hopes it encourages people to visit the museum more regularly.

Arplanet Digital Technology Co founder and chief executive officer Jennifer Pai said that her team’s vision is that AR technology will become accessible to everyone, and become a part of people’s everyday lives.

The AR guide is the “first step” in AR experience at museums, she said, adding that she hopes it will “no longer be a dream” for everyone to experience AR.

The AR guide not only uses technology to add value to the museum’s collection, but also turns mobile devices into personal guides, the museum said, adding that it breathes new life into the museum’s educational efforts and visitor services.

Visitors to the museum’s Natural History Branch can use the AR guide by downloading the mobile app marq+.

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