Rolling Stone joins the AR magazine cover brigade

This is one of the cooler magazine world versions of Augmented Reality we’ve seen in a while. When people scan the latest edition of Rolling Stone South Africa, they’ll get a free music video.

The September issue uses AR app Layar to allow readers real-time access to watch former Springbok Nude Girls singer Arno Carsten’s new music video, “Two Dogs” as well as preview its interview with him. They’ll also be able to share the story with friends on Facebook and Twitter.

The magazine partnered with specialist agency Jarvis and Layar affiliate Layarstudio Cape Town.

“It is great to be working with an iconic brand like Rolling Stone,” says Faiek Ceres, director of Jarvis. “To see one of our icons embracing technology like Augmented Reality gives us hope that Jarvis is on the right track. We would like to see more and more Augmented Reality becoming available in South Africa.”

To activate the cover and watch the video, people must download the ‘Layar’ app — from either the iTunes Store (for iPhone and iPad) or the Google Play Store (for Android devices) — to their smartphone or tablet device, point it at the cover and “tap to view”.

Rolling Stone tech editor Bradley Shaw reckons the technology has been a long time coming for South Africa:

Qualcomm have been pioneers of Augmented Reality and having seen how AR can be used in education, healthcare and other industries is certainly something we will see in the future. I also believe that this has great opportunities for ROLLING STONE to offer something different of advertisers in South Africa. Imagine being able to load an entire catalogue onto a single ad? Well you can now with this AR technology.

Although this is a first for Rolling Stone, it is far from the first AR magazine cover in the country. As early as April 2011, motoring magazine Car launched an AR issue, which included a track test video of a BMW M3.



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