Mapbox, the mapping and location platform for developers, has acquired Fitness AR, the augmented reality activity tracking app. The creator of Fitness AR, Adam Debreczeni, will be working together with his co-founder, Eric Florenzano, at Mapbox to help create a team of talented designers and developers who would be focusing on creating practical AR applications in key verticals. Application genres included instance, travel, weather, fitness, sports, and gaming. The company is also planning to open a new office in High Tech Park in Minsk.
“Designing augmented reality experiences for applications is still a very nascent field, requiring new tools and new thinking,” said Adam Debreczeni, co-founder of Fitness AR. “With the Unity Maps SDK, Mapbox is the leader in the exciting new space of AR and location. It’s thrilling to join the company at this stage to help build a team and show the world what’s possible if you mix real-time location data and AR.”
Launched last September, Fitness AR is one of the first ARKit-enabled apps and was featured by Apple. The app allows Strava users to connect their accounts and help visualize their runs, hikes and bike rides on a 3D terrain path. The Mapbox team was impressed by their implementation which they found relatively simple, just like most of the AR enabled apps.
“Navigation apps have not innovated in years,” said Eric Gundersen, CEO of Mapbox. “Drivers are looking at 2D maps on their phones like the old school atlas our parents had — we can do so much better. Front-facing cameras and navigation displays need to merge. Drivers should see an augmented reality, with directions showing up in front of where they need to turn. Phones will be the heads-up displays of the future without the need for expensive hardware.”
Founded in 2010, Mapbox is a location platform for developers which provides a global map, location search, real time traffic, and navigation through API’s and SDK’s. The company has more than 300 employees with locations in San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Bangalore, Berlin, Helsinki, Minsk, and Shanghai. Mapbox is gradually shifting focus toward augmented reality and has been making quite a few moves forward.