Given we are Review Raptor, when we came across the iDinosaurAR app on Android and Apple tablet computers we thought it quite apt to do a review.
The iDinosaurAR app is downloaded from google play or the app store onto a compatible tablet, the idea is that you also get a book to go with it, but this is available elsewhere (see below). The book contains pictures of dinosaurs which are somehow encoded onto the program on the tablet.
To start the process, you run the software then you point the tablets rear facing camera at the iDinosaurAR book, having chosen the dino which you want to bring to life. The tablet screen will show the view through the camera, which is at this stage, the book. The software recognizes which iDinosaurAR “character” it is looking at in the book and a box magically appears on the screen above the book, which shakes and rocks as though there is an angry dinosaur inside trying to get out!!
Notice our image is just a snapshot of our logo – the actual idinosaur images are very much more realistic!
With the click of an on screen icon, the dino smashes out of the box with a roar and starts stomping round the screen. Now at this point you have to bear in mind that the dinosaur (be it t-rex or “whoever”) is showing in full animation against a backdrop of your choice. For example, if you slowly move the android or apple tablet screen around, to point at a child for example, then the t-rex will appear to be walking on the child!!! There is also a flying Pteranodon to bring to life which soars through the air. With some good planning and a bit of acting skill from an accomplice, kids can take great photos and print them out or share them with buddies.
The animation is controlled by another icon / joystick type button on the screen which allows you to move the monster wherever you like around the screen – again, if you have someone on the screen, you can make the dino walk on their head. This is extreme fun for the kids. The augmented reality aspect of this software is extremely powerful, and even allows the user to move the tablets camera around to get a 3 dimensional view of the resurrected terror!!
To get the book, do a google for “iDinosaur” to locate the sellers on various websites including the larger more popular ones in the Palaeontology section, and use play or app store depending on your hardware to get the software installed on your device. The book is also available for purchase from within the app itself.
We ran the software on Android using both a google nexus 7 and an older galaxy s4 with no problems encountered (apart from downloading because google play crashes on the phone for reasons better known to itself – or at least grinds the phone to a sluggish slow speed (we would love to see the programming behind the play app – you know – for a laugh)). Double check your android machine uses ARMv7 architecture – which is supported by the program and that you have around 28MB available for the app – thats what it was when we grabbed it.
This idinosaurAR app is absolutely ideal for kids who love dinosaurs, and lets face it there aren’t many who don’t. The latest version has extra idinosaurs in there too – so look out when downloading to ensure you get hold of the latest version. So whilst plastic prehistoric velociraptor toy’s are great – we feel there’s more than enough room for 3d animated images of them running round a screen in packs!
Whats also great about this is that you can download a sample page from the book and print it off from within the app to get you up and running.