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Niantic Opens Lightship Platform Globally, Empowering Developers to Build Their Visions for the Real-World Metaverse


Niantic, developer of the world’s first and only scaled AR platform, releases Lightship, the vault of technology that powers Pokémon GO; Niantic Ventures will also invest $20 million in companies building the future of AR

SINGAPORE – Media OutReach – 11 November 2021 – AR technology company Niantic, Inc.(HQ: San Francisco, CA USA; CEO: John Hanke), the developer of the world’s first and only scaled AR platform, has announced the release of the Niantic Lightship Augmented Reality Developer Kit (Lightship ARDK) to all AR developers around the world. Available at Lightship.dev, the company has also shared a glimpse of the possibilities this technology affords through its launch brand partners like Coachella, Historic Royal Palaces, Lifull, the PGA of America, Science Museum Group, Shueisha, Softbank, the artist JR and Superblue, TRIPP, Universal Pictures and Warner Music Group. 

The Lightship Platform is the foundation for Niantic’s products, built on years of experience developing and running titles ranging from Ingress to Pokémon GO and Pikmin Bloom. As part of the Lightship Platform, the ARDK is a cross-platform software development kit that runs seamlessly on billions of Android and iOS devices around the world. It brings together the tools and technologies that power the top three AR features — Real-Time Mapping, Understanding and Sharing — so developers can create unique AR experiences that seamlessly utilize some or all of the ARDK tools. 

Niantic is also announcing the formation of Niantic Ventures to invest in and partner with companies building the future of AR. With an initial $20 million fund, Niantic Ventures will invest in companies building applications that share Niantic’s vision for the Real-World Metaverse and contribute to the global ecosystem that they are building. To learn more about Niantic Ventures, go to Lightship.dev.

“Transforming humanity’s relationship with technology by merging the physical and virtual worlds will require the ideas and perspectives of as many people as possible,” said John Hanke, Founder and CEO of Niantic. “That’s why we’re so excited to open the vault of technology that powers our own games, so developers, creators and brands globally can build inclusive experiences that push the boundaries of what’s possible in AR.”

More information on the launch can be found in Niantic’s Blog post, John Hanke’s announcement and Lightship AR video channel.