Top 10 Augmented Reality Projects by the Music Industry

Augmented Reality is like music to my ears (couldn’t resist the pun…)

The music industry is known more for stifling technology innovation than adopting it (cough*Napster *cough) which makes it especially gratifying to see recent attempts to harness augmented reality for music lovers (and/or nerds).

Here are my Top 10 augmented reality projects created by the music industry:

10) StudioB, Adobe and John Mayer “AR video clip”

“Studio B teamed with Adobe and John Mayer to create the worlds first Augmented Reality music video. Studio B shot and keyed the green screen footage using the new Apple ProRes 444 codec. I’m holding up a piece of paper with the designated marker (in this case a broken heart), and the video of John Mayer follows it around the screen, and even tilts in 3D space!”

It’s impressive to see a major music figure dedicating his time for an AR app – but is this significantly more interesting than just watching this 3D video on your PC?

9) Video for German Band Saint Aside

Here’s a “me too” music video in Germany for the band Saint Aside:

“Germany’s first Augmented Reality music video of the band Saint Aside. Das erste deutsche Augmented Reality Musikvideo der Band Saint Aside. Powered by AUGMEDIA dem Virtual Reality Marketing Kreativ-Netzwerk aus Deutschland, Leipzig.”

8) Doritos and Rihanna deliver AR experience

Can’t really see the AR interaction in this video, but hearing Rihana say “Augmented Reality” is worth it.

“To view “Who’s That Chick” by Rihanna in full, simply buy a bag of Doritos Late Night and got to
Using special packs of Doritos Late Night chips and a web cam, you can unlock an augmented reality experience with Rihanna.”

Triggering the experience from a consumer package is cool (no more printed markers!)

7) Kit-Kat and Scouting For Girls music

“Scouting For Girls – Augmented Reality with Kit Kat. If you open up a Kit Kat, do you see the augmented reality of Scouting for girls? Do the She’s So Lovely Stars really play in there? Join Scouting For Girls here to find out. Or, visit

Yet another music video triggered from a consumer package (Kit-Kat) – this time it’s more mindful to the new medium.

6) Eminem augmented reality competition by Polydor Records

“To take part all you need is a printer and a webcam – then, using the graffiti tools on the entry page, customize your very own 3D rotating Eminem “E” logo.”

“…enter the amazing Eminem augmented reality competition and you could win the trip of a lifetime to visit Em’s home town of Detroit”

Although not an AR music experience per se (more of a graffiti experience)- it’s definitely encouraging fans to interact with their idol in a new way. Talk about high profile motivation.

5) 10th Dimension create your own music video, TakingDog Studio

(Start watching at minute 2:03)

“Now you can create your own Augmented Reality real time interactive music videos for two of the songs from this project. Go to to try it out for yourself.”

Anything that involves some creation beats “screen watching”.

4) Music mixer with 5Gum

“Truly interactive Augmented Reality Application. Log on to to record your mix.”

Making music with an augmented reality interface is a cause for celebration.

3) Aphex twin overlay on Audience faces

“At this weekend London Electronic Festival (LED) Aphex Twin used live facial recognition to map the audience and overlay images of his own, trademark distorted face. Mesmerising and disturbing in equal measure! “

This is one of these things that had to be done. And they did it – beautiful!

2) Lost Valentinos customizable video clip with AR

“Innovative Sydney band Lost Valentinos and label etcetc have pushed an emerging technology to the very limit by launching the world’s first truly interactive augmented reality music video project. The project allows fans to record their own customised music videos for the single ‘Nightmoves’ by capturing band members performing the track in the fan’s own world. From lead singer Nik performing the song atop a user’s shoulders, to the whole band playing the song at the base of the Eiffel Tower – it’s a project limited only by the imagination.”

Record your own video clip with AR? Can’t get much better than that!

1) Black Eyed Peas 360

The most impressive use of AR in the music industry so far and the reason behind this post:

“App review: The New ‘BEP360‘ App for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch Takes Fans Inside ‘The Time (Dirty Bit)’ with 360-Degree Motion Control and Augmented Reality app Developed by Peas Front Man”

Edo Segal, from Futurity and a good friend – is behind this initiative that attempts to redefine how we experience music.


Didn’t make the list:

  • Voodoo Experience by Zehnder with Layar Augmented Reality browser (meant to enhance the concert experience – not to deliver a new way to experience music which is the focus of this post)
  • Exile on Your Street – an AR app for Rolling Stones fans – built on Layar – it enables you to leave Rolling Stones posters at your current location.
    Each poster can be customized with a track from Exile on Main Street and a personal message (no visual reference found)
  • N-Dubz, Against All Odds record cover triggering AR by Total Immersion (couldn’t find a video)
  • Album by hip-hop act Sinik, “Ballon d’Or,” include images giving access to ‘augmented reality’ features, by Total Immersion (couldn’t find video)
  • Sean Kingston: printing a special icon in the CD booklet for his album, which gave users access to the special AR section of his website. They could then sing along into their webcams to Sean’s Fire Burning track, with an animated version of the star appearing to dance around them. There were sharing elements here, too – the resulting videos could be posted on social networks or shared on the main site. (via Music Ally)
  • Lynx Augmented Reality Groupies on your desk (promoted a deodorant)
  • AR in French Music Video by Toxic Avenger (not really AR)

Ok, that’s cool. But grab any music industry executive that gets it, and you’ll hear that the true value of AR doesn’t lie in helping promote music (the industry is pretty good at marketing music as is), but in creating new experiences, new products which will lead to new revenue streams (think Guitar Hero). The sober realization is that it’s unlikely people will buy more music than they already do – but they are likely to want to experience music in new ways, and through new channels.

What will it look like?

How would you like to experience your favorite band in the real world (AR style)?

Additional references for AR in the Music Industry:

9 Responses

  1. Hello,

    You can find a video about Sinik here :

    A Video about NDubz project is available here :

    Another project has been done with The Wanted in the UK :

    Famous korean girls band 2NE1 was the centerpiece on an campaign dedicated on Music from Bean Pole. Making of here :

    and just a little touch of history with The Fratellis project which was one of the first web based consumer app using AR in the world :

    Have a great day !

  2. Hey Ori, You might see the potential for this that we are working on:

    (let me know if you would like the apk)

    No videos for the Rolling Stones app we made i’m afraid… it’s weird that Polydor simply didn;t promote the app (cos it’s pretty cool). You can create the virtual posters via this website: and then view them in Layar.

    Also, you used an image for our Beatles tour at the top of the article but fail to mention it ;) No worries – we remain very proud to have put the Beatles back on Abbey Rd using Layar:

    There’s so many creative possibilities for the music industry.

    AR + Music = <3

    I do like the

  3. First off … I helped make the 10th Dimension project and I’m happy to see it in this list.

    I’ve always loved how music videos have pushed the boundaries of imagery and special effects. With online video I’ve definitely seen some amazing music videos that would have never made it to TV because it may not have a broad appeal. I’m very excited to see where future AR projects go with imagery and interaction.

    Out of this list I really liked the Aphex Twin one the most… for it’s simplicity and the large spectacle it created… also (i’m a HUGE fan). I’m also curious why the “Music mixer with 5Gum” didn’t get more attention since it was much more interactive and more advanced in it’s pattern tracking.

    also … thanks for constantly blogging this stuff ;-)

  4. mmmm I honestly think you are missing this one on the list:

    There’s not everything about big brands…

  5. […] heeft een top 10 van Augmented Reality toepassingen binnen de muziek industrie gemaakt. […]

  6. Quantum Creativity project would put in evidence that our perception represent a previsioon of the probable interactions within the envitonment . So that what we see in a mixed reality scenario. This can be in sinergy with the Augmented Reality technology advancements . What is Augmented Reality ? The basic goal of an AR research is to enhance the users perception of and interaction with the real world through supplementing the real world with 3D virtual objects that appear to coexist in the same space as the real world. This mode of artificial mixing reality of AR systems is different from the natural perception of what we see or perceive by senses but is very similar in sharing
    the following common properties :
    1) Blends real and virtual, in a real environment
    2) Develop simulaneity through real-time interactivity
    3) Registered images in 3D within an accurate alignment of real and
    virtual objects.
    In AR Technology research the property n*3 is the more important because without accurate registration in real-time , the illusion that the virtual objects effectively exist in the real environment is severely compromised.
    Besids the AR research is not limited to the visual sense. AR can potentially apply to all senses, including touch, hearing, etc. . So that AR research generate a continuum of what we suppose as objective reality to virtual environments, and the result is a indistint Mixed Reality .
    SEE REPORT ON AR (2001) – file:///C:/Users/User/Downloads/504635279fae1a3df7.pdf

  7. […] Näiteks võid mõelda laiendatud reaalsuse lahendustele ( augmented reality) […]

  8. […] – Siamo tutti Aphex Twin. …London Electronic Festival (LED) Aphex Twin ha usato il riconoscimento facciale in tempo reale per mappare i volti del pubblico e sovrapporvi la propria immagine, il suo caratteristico volto con ghigno. Ipnotizante ed inquietante allo stesso tempo! ( […]

  9. And for something less passive, play with AR instruments and Fragment Reality . Try it free!

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