With the development of Apple’s ARKit and Google’s ARCore, mobile augmented reality (AR) applications have become much more popular. For Android devices, ARCore provides basic motion tracking and environmental understanding. However, with current software frameworks it
can be difficult to create an AR application from the ground up. Our solution is CalAR, which is a lightweight, open-source software environment to develop AR applications for Android devices, while giving the programmer full control over the phone’s resources. With CalAR, the programmer
can create marker-less AR applications which run at 60 frames per second on Android smartphones. These applications can include more complex environment understanding, physical simulation, user interaction with virtual objects, and interaction between virtual objects and objects in the physical
environment. With CalAR being based on CalVR, which is our multi-platform virtual reality software engine, it is possible to port CalVR applications to an AR environment on Android phones with minimal effort. We demonstrate this with the example of a spatial visualization application.