Traditional Media has taken an a**-whupping of epic proportions since the emergence of the Web and online media. Even more so with the explosion of mobile and social media. And now, Augmented Reality enters the fray?

With the emergence of AR recognition technology such as Google glasses, and smartphone apps that can read physical objects (like newspapers) and can read digital screens (like the ones you have on your TV) you can be sure that there is a mighty storm a brewing for the world of online marketing.

Think on the possibilities. Newspapers – both online and print version – could have AR brand images that send the viewer directly to their advertisers e-commerce store (read an article on your NFL team on the morning paper/tablet and get a deal on tickets to the next home game).  TV could have branded AR watermarks that dwell on the viewers screen deliver advertising messages that relate to the viewers geo-location (scan the Pizza Hut logo as you watch the game on TV and order your pizza).

And consider the possibility of applying consumer filter options to the AR viewer? Whether its Google glasses or smartphone AR readers, when consumers have the ability to select their AR interests, to filter in – and out – what they want, where they want and how they want to see it? That’s when it will get really interesting.

When AR is embraced universally, something that might take 2, 3 or even 10 years to achieve, traditional media will experience an incredible rebirth.  It will be a Phoenix-like transformation of an old dying medium that will rise from the ashes and emerge stronger, bigger and brighter than before. With old media’s claws dug deep in the flesh of web, mobile, social – the so called “new media” – coupled with the inexorable metamorphosis of TV and computers, there will be an absolute hum-dinger of a war for marketing dollars between the revitalized old media and the upstart new media. A real war – with two arguably equal combatants –  fighting tooth and nail for relevancy in the eyes and wallets of brands and consumers.

Maybe old media becomes the NEW, new media? Now wouldn’t that be some circle-of-life type irony?

There are obviously a host of other considerations that will influence the impact of AR such as user adaptation, sensory over-stimulation, regulation (censorship?)  controls for age-sensitive imagery, and the list goes on, but whats really exciting is that the AR is happening now.  It’s potential impact on traditional media is just the tip of the iceberg.

Vaughan Palelei is the founder of Vidgeo a geo-social mobile platform based on like and location and contributor to  click here for bio

images courtesy of Flickr

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