Brushing teeth in augmented reality

Brushing teeth in augmented reality

A developer shows how he imagines brushing teeth in the future with today’s XR hardware.

It looks like an everyday situation: A man stands in front of a mirror and brushes his teeth. But the scene is not so everyday: The man is wearing a Quest 2 in AR mode. That means he sees a grainy black-and-white image of the world, which becomes a canvas for digital elements.

In front of him, a weather app and various widgets are anchored in place. He opens a to-do list with a wave of his hand. When he has finished brushing his teeth, he casually slides the top item into the toothbrush cup and receives points for the completed task.

Augmented reality is (slowly) becoming a reality

It’s the AR cliché of a world in which the digital and the physical interpenetrate. Apps are part of the environment instead of being trapped in screens.

The idea itself is old and not particularly original. What is interesting is that it can already be implemented with a device that costs little and has been sold millions of times. The science fiction concept thus becomes a bit of reality.

It is a concept because the interface is only a mockup and not functional. The individual elements were designed by hand in the AR view and placed in the physical world for video purposes only.

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In the video, the developer shows how he did it, and along the way demonstrates AR prototyping of an interface in augmented reality itself.

Futuristic vision, current hardware

The digital objects were designed using the 3D design tool Shapes XR for Meta Quest, which is intended for just such purposes. The startup’s community leader, Gabriele Romagnoli, posted the video on Twitter and Linkedin to promote the tool.

Even if the interface worked: it wouldn’t really be practical with this hardware, the 500-gram Quest 2. The video is meant more as a glimpse into an AR future where slim AR glasses are as commonplace as smartphones are today. A future that can be seen as utopian or dystopian, depending on your point of view. But that’s another question entirely.

A few days ago, Unity developer Greg Madison also showed an AR concept for Quest 2 that revolves around productivity and next-gen digital screens.