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ArchINFORM winner of the Developer Challenge

Dirk Groten September 6, 2009

archinform_screenshotDuring the developer workshop on August 18th, we announced the Layar Developer Challenge: Any developer who created after August 17th and submitted for publication before August 21st, midnight, would enter the Challenge. On Saturday morning, I found 7 layers in my inbox. All were ready for publication and needed at most minor changes to be approved.

These were the participants:

  • Hoppala by Marc René Gardeya: What was briefly discussed during the workshop has already been realized: An aggregator layer! Complete with provisioning form for other layer developers to add their layer. The layer hasn’t been published yet and is looking for other layers to join in :-) Go to Marc René’s website if you’re interested.

  • Miljoenhuizen (a million of houses) by Nico Schoonderwoerd ( A real estate site for the Netherlands with a potential to grow to many other countries in Europe. Very cool custom look. In the NL, search for ‘huizen’ to find this layer.

  • Openingstijden (opening hours) by Hans Nauta ( Opening times of stores nearby, like supermarkets, DIY stores, etc… The cool thing is, the app gives you the opening times for today and tomorrow.

  • Architecture Guide by Sascha Hendel (ArchInform): An original new kind of layer, that will inform you of the architecture of special buildings all over the world. And not just touristic landmarks, you’ll be amazed at the depth of their database, highlighting industrial buildings as well.

  • Verbeterdebuurt (improve your neighborhood) by Johannes La Poutré ( Give feedback about the public space around you, like garbage dumps, neglected parks or dangerous traffic situations and view the feedback of others. The site is used by local authorities to improve the public areas.

  • Hotpads by Doug Lewis ( The first real estate layer for the US. Very cool graphics, great number of houses in the database (well, enough houses for sale at this point in time…)

  • Estaciones de Servicio (gas stations in Spain) by SIGNO (Jose Millares): The first layer to find the nearest gas stations, you can search by brand (e.g. type BP and only BP stations will be shown). The very cool feature is that the actual prices of gas are shown, so you can choose the cheapest one!

We’ve had a hard time judging this competition. All layers had their particularities making them stand out compared to the current directory of layers. Should we award based on originality? Design? Usefulness? Coverage? In the end we just followed our hearts, voted and found out that we unanimously agreed on the number 1 spot: ArchINFORM.

The prize for Sascha is a white HTC Hero, which will soon make its way from Amsterdam to Berlin.


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Layar in Barcelona

Rhymo August 28, 2009

Big thanks to the guys from!

They made a great demonstration video of the application. It’s probably the best demo video showing all functionalities of Layar.

No idea what they are saying bytheway.. ;-) I hope they liked the application.


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Twitterers eager on Layar

Jaqueline Heijn August 23, 2009

Are you interested in exchanging your Layar experiences with other users? Or want to share your ideas for new layers? Then follow @layarmobile on Twitter!

Layar founders Raimo van der Klein, Claire Boonstra and Maarten Lens-Fitzgerald also post their thoughts on Twitter. You can follow them at: @rhymo, @claireboo and @dutchcowboy.

racchioIs trying #Layar on his #android phone and is amazed!
RobIsItI think this is the killer application for mobile, local information
AndrewBonnerAugmented reality looks awesome!
comgoranI just saw a youtube clip about Layar. Wow. The future is here! Im so going to get a Hero all thanks to you!
jvandisseldorpJust tested out Layar on Android and saw my own house in augmented reality through Funda feed. Very cool!
HendrikCBosYesterday I saw it in real and it worked beautifully, layar is still King Marketing & AR
MBerman1I played with the layar phone at the office. It really is incredible.
marcfonteijnBuffy the Vampire #layar … ;)
netherlandyPlaying with layar on Android. Augmented reality is fun! Halifax needs more layers.
tomklaver#layar is the first pants tighteningly cool thing for the iPhone 3gs. The term killer app doesn’t quite express how excited I am
herbertherbertThis tech’s just awesome.
infophageJust tested #Layar Reality Browser for Android Just amazing, it’s one of those Science Fiction moments :-)
sarisignorelliI’m so excited about #Layar ! Imagine the possibilities.
leoverdonckBeen to #layar 2.0 ….Impressed….
csoren#Layar for Android is seriously impressive!
paulusveltmanThx for yet another awesome event. Loved Bruce and was impressed by all #layar announcements.
jspinneyvery very very cool AR stuff coming out of #Layar unveiling in Amsterdam
andrevanhoepenZiet er strak uit dat Layar:)
tuzonghuaAndroid Layar reality browser is back out on the Market. Sweet!
danischoutenwe got a winner.
doxarasHilarious. Samsung provides with Galaxy a custom layer for Durex points of sale in Amsterdam.
marcfonteijnI will bet you a big yellow smily that a pacman #layar will be just THE killer #layar
benjamiImpressed with Layar
nasnl105 layars (soon) is impressive in just 2 months
micheloptlandtNext version of #Layar looks nice. Process for adding and publishing a new layer looks pretty straightforward.
delchonessI was quoted at #layar next. holy cow! ;-)
thedocTrying out Layar for Android. Awesome stuff.
maartenkesLayar heeft “quite a buzz” veroorzaakt, rode hoed barst zowat uit z’n voegen
dymetzerThe Layar App for Droid is pretty impressive
nymphobraniacAn Augmented Reality browser for Android and iPhone 3GS? This is a game changer
damonoehlmanLayar is the first app to really make me want an android based phone.
mayito97did you try layar at the strip its insane especially twitmondo
jogonzalJust discovered Layar. Its creepy but cool.
alwaystyredChilling in the yard, checking out Android apps! Get involved with Layar, looks ace!
thelazzyoneLayar for android is amazing! I love that it is some many different augmented reality apps in one.
jeffbereznyis perplexed by layar reality browser. 2.0 check it out!
thethomaspetersLayar shows the Augmented Reality - This is getting fun! WoW - how fast we are advancing
tompolkLayar looks to have all ingredients to be THE mobile marketing delivery platform.
uniquelyericabout time android getting some better apps… is hot as HELL!!!
negativekMmm, Twitter plus Layar really is sexy.
thesreichertLayar looks pretty damn cool…
wonvankalsbeekGEWELDIG: augmented reality for Android
ivansmiththis thing looks pretty cool
ibsmohammedWow…layar is a very impressive app
michaeljbyersDownloaded Layar for my phone last night. It looked great, I think Augmented Reality (AR) is going to be BIG!!
kiteatonJust concluded speaking with Maarten Lens-Fitzgerald of Layar—a very cool guy, with a very cool app.
baslangenbergLayar is de shit!
theokroeseLayar, the next generation of interaction, pretty cool
r3vmixmanThis new app on my phone is awesome. Its called “Layar” and it let’s me find people near me using twitter, reviews, shops, etc. Fun stuff.
orchardonlineLayar Reality Browser - it’s augmented reality taken to the next level…
digisalwow Layar for the G1 is pretty awesome. Brightkite has a featured layer. so cool.
zlpLayar augmented reality browser for your phone… UNREAL…
gartenbergThanks to @Rhymo I’m now augmenting my reality with Layar. One of the coolest mobile apps. EVER.
asgodfreyLayar’s gone global. Sooooo happy. Apple still doesn’t support video API’s for iPhone. Soooooo angry.
appholicLayar is great! Makes places a lot more interesting! Gonna stroll in NYC to play w/ it some more! Gotta bring my charger tho’!
simondsGoing to walk around downtown and play with Layar, new augmented reality browser. Only on Android for now (suck it iPhone).
snafilterCan’t wait to try out Layar and the Trulia Layer next time we go house shopping! Goosebumps I tell you, goosebumps! Augemented Reality


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Press Release: Layar Reality Browser Announces Global Launch and New Features in the Latest Release

Maarten Lens-FitzGerald August 17, 2009

Over 100 partners worldwide developing content layers including well known brands

AMSTERDAM, August 17th 2009. Layar, which was first launched in June 2009 in The Netherlands, announces that its second generation Reality Browser is now available globally on Android devices. Many new content layers are available in the Reality Browser which vary from Wikipedia, Twitter and Brightkite to local services like Yelp, Trulia, store locators, nearby bus stops, mobile coupons, Mazda dealers and tourist, nature and cultural guides.

Layar Reality Browser 2.0
To discover new content quickly and with ease, the new Reality Browser includes sections for ‘Featured’ and ‘Popular’. All layers are also accessible via a keyword search in the search function. Layers that are used often can be saved to ‘Favorites’. In addition to the enhanced augmented reality camera view, it is now possible to select Map or List view. For every Point of Interest (POI), several actions can be taken such as: linking to a mobile site for more information, playing a live location based trivia game, linking to a video or sound clip, clicking to call for reservations, and looking at a route description to the POI. Content partners can fully customize their layer to provide a distinctive experience for the user.

500 more developers
Over 100 developers worldwide have been given access to the Layar platform by means of an API key, and are currently developing layers.

Scott Halcomb of SystemK from Japan, who developed 22 layers including the ‘Sapporo Hotspots’ layer:
“With the Layar API and support of the developers community, creating layers has been a pleasure.”

Dave Elchoness of GoWeb3D from the USA/ India, with 11 layers published including FlickAR:
“We strongly believe that Layar represents the next evolution for mobile applications and feel privileged to participate.”

Michael Coutinho, Technical Manager at Trulia, USA:
“This is a great idea. I was able to develop our layer in about three hours.”

To further grow the community of developers, Layar has released an additional 500 new API keys. The supporting wiki (, with developer instructions and documentation, is now available.

Layar for all
Starting from today, Layar is available for everyone with an Android phone anywhere in the world. The Reality Browser can be downloaded in all local Android Markets and is pre-installed on the new Samsung Galaxy (i7500) in The Netherlands.

Dirk Groten, CTO:
“The next platform on which Layar will be available is the iPhone 3GS. We are currently investigating other platforms that support our functionalities.”

Raimo van der Klein, CEO:
“With the release of this Reality Browser we believe we have created a worldwide platform that will bring both fun and relevant Augmented Reality experiences in one application to a growing audience of users.”

The Layar Reality Browser displays real time digital information on top of reality in the camera screen of the mobile phone. While looking through the phone’s camera lens, a user can see houses for sale, popular bars and shops, tourist information of the area, play a live game, etcetera. Layar first launched on June 16th, 2009 and announced the opening up of its platform by means of an API on July 8th, 2009. The Layar platform serves as an enabler for mobile location services - any database with geo-location information can easily be turned in a content layer. The Layar Reality Browser is globally available for mobile phones running the Android operating system. Layar is a company based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Contact Maarten Lens-FitzGerald at for press inquiries

All press material is on
View all new content layers here:
View all new functions here:
View all developer videos here:


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Layar pre-installed on Samsung Galaxy in The Netherlands

Rhymo August 14, 2009

Layar - Samsung Galaxy

Today, 14th of August,  Samsung Netherlands announced that Layar will be pre-installed on Samsung’s first Android phone, the Galaxy (i7500). This Layar version will have, next to the regular content, exclusive layers of Dutch restaurant review site IENS, Buienradar (rain-forecast) and Samsung Search by ilocal. We are grateful that Samsung has chosen Layar as a partner to bring our exciting service to their customers. During today’s press-event the Dutch press was also treated to a preview of our new and improved browser: Layar Reality Browser 2.0

If  you are interested to hear all about our next browser just RSVP for the Layar NEXT event coming Monday in Amsterdam.


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