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Where digital and physical media meet
Where digital and physical media meet

Where digital and physical media meet

FMCG SUPPLIER NEWS - May 20th, 10:47

The Witness newspaper has broken the mould of typical print media by integrating augmented reality as a way to extend the life its physical print content. 

Using the Aurasma augmented reality app for iOS and Android, The Witness has bridged a gap between digital content and traditional print media by allowing readers to access extra content in print stories using their smartphone or tablet.

“Picking up on international trends and maximising the uses of the technology, we embarked on a campaign to offer our audience an enhanced read, which not only offers value added content but also an audio and visual experience which is a culmination of print, online and broadcast journalism,” said The Witness online editor, Kyle Venktess.

How it works

In order to offer readers the opportunity to make use of the technology in every edition of The Witness, the paper is required to shoot video on a daily basis.

A team of reporter, photographer and videographer attend a scene and work in conjunction with one-another to produce the Aurasma package, Venktess said.

Once the story and picture has gone through production, the image associated with the story is marked with the Aurasma logo. Meanwhile, the video shot for the story is edited and uploaded to the Aurasma studio, a platform used to generate ‘auras’.

Once the image is placed on a page, an image of the entire page is created to form the trigger image for the aura.

Once a reader scans the image using the app, the overlaying video adopts the dimensions of the image in the newspaper off the screen and brings it to life.

When the image is activated, readers are then able to access breaking news content on our website through links on the video. Also included are Facebook discussions and related Tweets.

The application is currently available for iOS and Android devices as well as new BlackBerry devices running on the BlackBerry 10 operating system through the native Android application.

Venktess and the Aurasma were finalists in the 2013 Standard Bank Sikuvile Journalism Awards.


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