Google’s new AR dinosaurs are the most fun you can have with a smartphone
Quarantine has come with more than its fair share of boredom — there’s no denying that. For those with kids, trying to keep the family sane while everyone is trapped at home for months on end? Not a good time. So the next time you need a quick laugh, something educational, and just something fun to entertain your entire family (regardless of their ages), head to Google’s new AR dinosaurs feature, which lets you use your smartphone camera to place realistic, life-size dinos in the world around you.
Google just announced the new feature, which is a partnership with Universal Brand Development, Amblin Entertainment and Ludia that allows users to bring to life 10 different dinosaurs from the Jurassic World franchise. Ever wanted to see how a T-Rex will definitely not fit in your living room? Now’s your chance.
All you have to do is search for “dinosaurs” or one of the species that’s available — Tyrannosaurus Rex, Velociraptor, Triceratops, Spinosaurus, Stegosaurus, Brachiosaurus, Ankylosaurus, Dilophosaurus, Pteranodon, and Parasaurolophus — on your smartphone. In the Google results, you should see a picture of the dinosaur and a button that says “view in 3D.” Click that, and it’ll activate your camera and allow you to see the size, scale, and features of a prehistoric animal up close in whatever environment you’re in.
It’s obviously educational — the Google searches come with tons of information and facts about each dinosaur that will delight kids and adults alike. But aside from that, it’s just really, really fun.
The new AR features had me running all over my apartment, dropping dinosaurs on the couch, on the coffee table, and in the hallway.
If you live in a small apartment like I do, some of these will definitely work better if you can get outside into some open space.
When I tried to drop a T-Rex in my bedroom, for example, all you could see was his leg. But hey, I definitely got a clear idea of the true size and scale of the King of the Dinosaurs.
Unfortunately, not every smartphone can support the technology — if you’re on Android, you’ll need a device with ARCore, and if you’re on iPhone, you’ll need iOS 11 or better.
But once you work your way through the dinosaurs, there’s plenty more Google AR fun to discover. The search giant has been adding AR views to different animals since last year, so you can also alarm your cats by adding a new friend for them.
Or, my personal favorite: Stick a floating Great White Shark in your living room.
The full list of AR animals can be found here. Have fun!