On Wednesday, at Unity's Unite developer conference in Austin, Udacity announced its new Learn ARKit program to teach developers how to build augmented reality (AR) apps for Apple's ARKit. The one-month long program will cost $200, and will teach students how to build the apps using either Unity or Swift, a press release said.
Apple's ARKit will eventually be on 400 to 500 million devices, once iOS 11 adoption grows. This program presents a great opportunity for developers to hone specialized skills in order to be able to effectively work with the platform, the release noted.
"Augmented and virtual reality are the future—so much so that the most influential companies in technology are betting big on their potential. It's a great time for seasoned developers and newbies alike to sharpen their skills," Jessica Lindl, global head of education at Unity Technologies, said in the release.
One of the specialized skills that users will learn in the project-based program is an understanding of visual inertial odometry, which helps determine position and orientation based on images. Students will also learn many of the other foundational computer vision mechanisms that support ARKit.
Students will learn how to build apps that allow a user to set virtual objects on a physical plane, which has long been one of the key types of interfaces for AR. These apps are used for everything from gaming to interior design planning.
The course will also teach developers how to add dynamic lighting effects to alter ambient lighting in an app, the release said. They'll also be taught how to add shadow effects, and make the virtual object seem much more life-like in the scene it occupies.
This is a month-long, single-term program, and it is available at a cost of $199 for either the Unity or Swift versions.
Audacity and Unity also announced that they would be expanding their collaborative VR Developer Nanodegree program to the Asia-Pacific region. The program takes place over the span of three two-month terms that cost $400 each. However, an advanced student could enter the course in the second term. Courses will be available online and in training centers, the release said.
"Unity believes that the world is fundamentally a better place when we have more creators. So that's why we're delighted about these Udacity programs," Tony Parisi, head of VR and AR strategy at Unity Technologies, said in the release. "We think this is going to get Unity into more people's hands, making more great VR. We can't wait to see what happens."
The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers
- Udacity, in partnership with Unity, is offering a new developer training course to teach the fundamentals of Apple's ARKit for $200.
- Students will learning inertial odometry, lighting, and shadows for virtual objects that are placed into real-life images.
- Unity and Udacity will also be expanding their collaborative VR Developer Nanodegree program to the Asia-Pacific region, offering it both online and in-person.
- Build 30 Mini Virtual Reality Games in Unity 3D From Scratch (TechRepublic Academy)
- The Full Stack Web Development Course (TechRepublic Academy)
- Executive's guide to the business value of VR and AR (free ebook) (TechRepublic)
- Udacity rolls out VR developer nanodegree (ZDNet)
- Virtual and augmented reality policy (Tech Pro Research)
- Apple previews ARKit apps, Google debuts ARCore: It's all about business, developers (ZDNet)
- Apple's ARKit: Everything the pros need to know (TechRepublic)
Conner Forrest has nothing to disclose. He doesn't hold investments in the technology companies he covers.
Conner Forrest is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He covers enterprise technology and is interested in the convergence of tech and culture.