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Redweb Content Digest: Artificial realities and vertical video

From augmented reality and artificial intelligence, to the future of video for brands and advertisers, this week’s digest rounds up a broad range of stories from around the world of content.


Niantic aims to enhance AR with the aid of artificial intelligence 

Niantic, best known for its augmented reality games such as Pokémon GO and Ingress, has taken to social media to showcase a few internal demos aiming to improve augmented reality and its sense of realism. 



The first of the three demos uses neural networks and AI to detect furniture and objects around a user, and then hide and show augmented models and characters if they pass through objects in the user’s environment. It’s also able to approximate shadows that might be cast by the AR objects, which builds a convincing experience when paired up with other aspects of the demo. 

Niantic have also showcased a few other promising demos focused on the multiplayer aspect of AR, opening it up to be a more social experience. Here’s hoping we see some of this tech make it into one of their games! 

Read: Niantic teases AR platform capable of real world interaction


Facebook’s under scrutiny, again..

One would be forgiven for thinking we were through most of the drama in the Cambridge Analytica (CA) scandal, however it appears it’s not all over just yet. A US federal investigation has found itself expanding to cover the social media company in more depth to determine whether Facebook made false, or misleading statements about the information shared between itself and CA. 

Alongside looking into whether Facebook made false or misleading statements, investigators are looking into whether the comments made during Mark Zuckerberg’s Capitol Hill testimony were sufficient, and whether the company made timely disclosures about the data breaches to its users and investors. 

It seems like the data breaches and scandals have become a never-ending saga for Zuckerberg and co., with this latest twist putting the company under even more scrutiny from federal agencies in the US. 

Read: Federal investigators want to know if Facebook lied about Cambridge Analytica 


Delta and Equinox team up to use data to combat jet lag 

A slightly unusual partnership has been formed between Delta Airlines and Equinox, a fitness chain, to attempt to combat jet lag. The duo have taken advantage of flight tracking technology and digital signage to offer discounts and incentives for customers, encouraging them to hop off their flight and into their nearest gym to sweat out the jet lag. 

To incentivise people to visit a gym after arriving, advertisers installed 10 digital billboards in proximity to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) showing dynamic content including flight numbers and departures, along with a URL to sign up for a class. In combination with the signage campaign, Equinox has developed a workout specifically tailored to combat the effects of jet lag. 

Whilst we’re a little sceptical of whether hopping into a gym straight after a flight would be top of passengers’ priority lists, we’re all for dynamic content being used in advertising – and this is a great example.

Read: Hashtag sweatlag: Delta and Equinox partner in OOH play for passengers to sweat away their jetlag


Transmedia storytelling and the democratisation of video

Make no mistake about it, video has transitioned from being reserved for an elite group of producers into something that anyone with a smartphone and internet access can make. A multitude of different platforms have emerged to enable this democratisation of video, with more predicted to spring up over the next few years. 

But what exactly does this mean for brands looking to sponsor and advertise via video? Luc Benyon from Video Intelligence has analysed the landscape and made a few predictions of where things are heading. 

Key takeaways range from creating bespoke content for multiple channels, prioritising interactive videos to facilitate conversion, and the potential for automated video production, allowing for tailored campaigns and messages. 

Read more: Democratised video is media’s next transformative trend


That’s all for this week – leave us a comment if we missed anything. We’ll be back next week with another collection of content news and stories. 


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