• Artificial reality developer Niantic taps MobiledgeX for social AR gaming.
  • DT among carrier partners to conduct network tests for latest 5G-enabled mobile game.

DT pressure-tests Niantic’s multiplayer AR tech

DT pressure-tests Niantic’s multiplayer AR tech

Source: Niantic

Artificial reality (AR) games developer Niantic began testing its multiplayer AR mobile gaming on partner networks, with Deutsche Telekom (DT) among them.

The game, Codename: UrbanLegends, relies on 5G connectivity to enable multiplayer AR “experiences”. The multiplayer element, which requires low latency and high bandwidth, is said to be a key use-case for AR in gaming and, as Niantic put it, is a “glimpse into the future of AR and 5Gnetworks”. DT, Globe Telecom, and Verizon are the carrier partners enlisted to network test the technology.

DT Senior Vice-President and Head of Strategy & Technology Innovation Alex Choi confirmed that the network trials were “enabled by MobiledgeX”, DT’s edge gaming spinout and regular Niantic collaborator. “Edge enablement is crucial to our ability to deliver trusted, secure user experiences”, he said.

Niantic added that the mobile edge computing trials current underway were a “demonstration” of the technology expected to be produced under its Planet-Scale ARAlliance — a collaborative AR platform that aims to commercialise 5G-enabled AR content. Existing members of the Alliance — DT, BT Group’s EE, Globe Telecom, Orange, SK Telecom, Softbank, TELUS, and Verizon — were joined by newcomer Telstra in March 2021.

Niantic is perhaps best known for developing PokemonGo, the AR-powered mobile game which was arguably the first to successfully leverage AR for broad public appeal. Niantic’s MobiledgeX partnership was established in October 2018 with the goal to exploit DT’s 5G network, MobiledgeX edge services, and Niantic’s RealWorld Platform to develop AR-based games (DeutscheTelekomwatch, #70, #77, #90, and passim).