Conserve endangered animals around the world while snapping pics with their augmented reality counterparts on Safari Central, an app created by Internet of Elephants. The app’s goal is to make wildlife a global phenomenon and to increase conservation awareness among people who are otherwise disconnected from wild animals. While the app is currently in a preview version, Internet of Elephants will release the full edition later in 2018.
The AR quality in Safari Central is among the best I’ve seen in any educational app. The animals seem so realistic, even in their movements: the elephant swings its trunk, the lemur jumps from place to place, and the rhino swivels its ears, all accompanied by animal noises and outdoor sounds. Each of the AR images is based on a real life animal being protected by one of six partnered conservation organizations. The digital animals are so realistic that even bumps and age spots show up on the elephant’s skin.
You can also snap pictures of the animals as they wander across your desk or on your friend’s shoulders. While the AR portion of the app needs a target to work, you can either print one from their website or, ingeniously, use a dollar bill or other small piece of currency from around the world. Each digital animal comes with information about its real life, the species, and the conservation group helping to protect it. Safari Central also invites you to donate to the different organizations.
While you can access some information about each animal as you play, it’s a small amount, usually just a sentence each about the animal, species, and conservation organization. I hope future iterations of this app come with more information, or even stories, about each of these items. In addition, although you can snap photos now, you can’t record videos, which would add an even more interesting feature to share via social media. Finally, Safari Central only allows you to take five pictures of each animal before you have to buy more access. Although this is understandable because part of the in-app purchase revenue goes to the conservation organizations, it could still be a negative factor for some.
With Safari Central, you can experience high quality AR animals while learning about conservation efforts around the world. The full version of the app won’t be released until the end of next year, but the preview version currently offered still provides a lot of fun as it increases your awareness about endangered animals and encourages you to help the conservation movement.Image: Screenshot via Safari Central App