Google hid the future of AR in plain sight at I/O 2024


As I approached the demo booths for Project Starline at Google I/O 2024, I saw the poetic words written on each door. “Enter a portal into another world,” “Feel like you’re there even when you’re not.”—these words are often associated with VR experiences as they all have that magical “presence” factor that tricks your brain into thinking you’re somewhere you’re not, but Project Starline isn’t VR at all.

Instead, Starline is a sort of conferencing table with a magic portal that leads to another Starline booth somewhere in the world. You sit at the table as you might any other desk or conference room table and talk to the person (or people) on the other end, but the trick is that Starline isn’t just a flat screen. It’s a Lightwave projection that displays a 3D projection of the person on the other end, a realism I simply wasn’t prepared for.

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