Best Android Augmented Reality Apps

By Steve McFarlane

Augmented reality apps can be used for a host of informative and fun things. From fun gaming adventures to marketing your business, there are tons of ways to use augmented reality apps. Unfortunately, if you do a search for Android augmented reality apps you will find some good ones, and an even larger list of crappy ones. This is a roundup of some of the best Android augmented reality apps we could find.

Wikitude World Browser

Find events, tweets, ATMs, restaurants, user reviews, related Wikipedia articles and a host of other interesting information with Wikitude.  The Wikitude app overlays interactive content and information onto your phone’s display by using the augmented reality browser platform to allow you to explore the world around you with your smart phone. However, if you don’t take the time to configure this app to your preference you can be overwhelmed by the shear amount of information that Wikitude presents to the user. QR code

See this app in action below:

Wikitude Drive US

This Augmented reality app can make it fun, or nauseating, or dangerous to stare at your phone’s screen to get driving directions. The app allows the user to see navigation information being display onto the device’s screen in real time. Because Wikitude overlays navigation directions onto the phone’s camera feed there is no need to view aerial maps. The app will also show you points of interest as you travel. For example, it will show you when you are about to pass a restaurant or pizzeria.

PLEASE: If you decide to use this app, hand it over to a co-pilot while you focus on driving; do it for the rest of us. QR code

Car Finder AR

A car is a pretty big thing to loose, but sometimes those large parking lots can get the better of us. If you often forget where you park that car of yours, ‘Car Finder AR’ can help you find it. Car Finder AR will help you find your way back to your vehicle by giving walking or driving directions to where you left it. The app makes it easy to save where you parked the car by simply opening the app and shaking the phone. You can also set a timer to remind you that you had parked beside a parking meter. Other features of the app include:

  • The ability to manage up to 3 cars
  • Driving/walking directions to where you had parked the vehicle
  • A home screen widget for saving a location with just one click
  • Location history
  • Share a location (via email and SMS) with other phones to coordinate a meet-up
  • Augmented reality map or RADAR view to find your way back to a saved location
  • Saves location automatically on bluetooth disconnect
  • Store a log on Google Calendar

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Locus – Addon AR

Locus is one of those highly rated map applications that can record the route you hiked or traveled, and display POI (points of interest) along the way. This app is an addon that allows you to actually visualize POI’s on map in an Augmented reality view. QR code


Layar is the premier Augmented reality browser. It can be used to discover information and facts about the world around you. The app uses augmented reality technology, called layers (of which there are many), to display information on the phone’s screen that is relative to the devices current location. For example, a real estate layer can be used to overlay information about apartments that are available for rent in your immediate vicinity by simply pointing the phone in the direction of buildings that you think may have vacancies. It also has a map view that can be used to see places and information of interest to you. QR code

See this app in action below:


Here is a great app for stalkers. TweepsAround allows you to see who is tweeting near you and gives you and option to tweet back at them. I don’t know about you, but I would be pretty freaked out if someone responded to one of my tweets by accurately describing what I was wearing. Fortunately, TweepsAround does have a limited area restriction so in theory no one should be able to track you from across town, if they aren’t good at hacking that is. This app requires that the Layar app be pre-installed though, if it’s not, you will be shown a download link to get it. QR code

Star Chart

This astronomy app allows you to carry a virtual star chart in your pocket. Install the app and point your phone to the sky to have it reveal the constellations and stars that are in the visible universe. Using GPS technology, an accurate 3D universe, and all of the latest high tech functionality, Star Chart calculates, in real time, the current location of every star and planet that is visible from Earth and shows you precisely where they are; even in broad daylight, if you can see your phone’s screen that is. QR code

Google Sky Map

Google Sky Map turns your Android-powered mobile phone into a window into the night sky. This app works similar to Star Chart, in that it turns your Android into an astronomy app. Point your phone or tablet at the sky, and Google Sky Map will show the stars, planets, constellations, and more to help you identify the celestial objects that should be in view. QR code

Satellite AR

Except that you want to impress your friends with a cool app, or ensure that you don’t mistake a satellite for a star, I am not sure what good this app can be used for, but if you have ever wondered what satellites are flying above, this app will show them to you using augmented reality. Point your phone’s camera to the sky, and small icons will track the location of various satellites. Those in sunlight are colored yellow to help you look for them on a clear night. QR code

See this app in action below:

3D Compass (AR Compass)

Instead of the plain old digital compass you have on your phone use this cool app to superimpose a virtual compass over the phone’s live camera shot. Use the app to take screen shots of you current address, bearing and speed and send that to your friends. QR code

There are many other augmented reality apps for Android phones and Tablets as we pointed out earlier. While many are built on a good concept, there is a large percentage that isn’t well executed. The apps we presented in the article represent some of the best we could find. Be sure to check out our roundup of Android augmented reality games. The following apps did not make our list, but are worth a second look. Photos Around, Lookator, PhantomALERT and Dashboard Assist.

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