Galileo Augmented Reality TV
For the ‘Galileo AR Week’, German broadcaster ProSieben released an augmented reality app that let viewers enhance their linear TV experience.
ProSieben’s popular science show “Galileo” ventured into the world of augmented reality by running the ‘Galileo AR Woche’ (Galileo AR Week) and launching a dedicated AR app. For an entire week from November 6 through 10, viewers were able to extend their linear TV experience via augmented objects.
The trailer for the TV show
Redefining the Status Quo of Viewer Engagement
Galileo is known in Germany for its innovative, experimental programming, and has won the category of “Best Infotainment” at the German Television Awards. Nevertheless, its viewership has been threatened by the market’s movement away from traditional “linear TV” and onto streaming platforms.
ProSieben sought a new way to engage viewers that could help them compete within this new industry landscape. Augmented reality represents a promising solution to this problem in that it is exciting, engaging, requires nothing more than a TV and smartphone, and can offer interactive content that leverages the live “shared experience” nature of linear TV.
ProSieben reached out to the AR startup eyecandylab to tackle this challenge, and eyecandylab booked me as the Creative Director for the project. My job was to develop concepts and ideas for each of the 11 planned episodes, while working closely with Galileo’s Head of Services, editors, and journalists.
Since this project represented an entirely new type of media, I began by designing a series of fundamental visual elements for incorporating AR into television, as well as a style guide. I also designed the UX and UI for the accompanying AR smartphone “viewer” app. I was assisted in these efforts by a wealth of audience research data that ProSieben was able to provide.
To meet the tight 4-month schedule requested by ProSieben, I rapidly built out a remote team of developers and designers in Kuala Lumpur, and moved there for two months to direct the work. This ultimately allowed us to deliver both on-time and under-budget.
Eyecandylab’s technology enables direct second screen engagement on TV content. It uses moving images as markers to conquer the space around the TV and provide augmented reality.
This additional content enables storytelling and advertising on a whole new level. Every AR content can be made interactive to increase the viewers‘ engagement.
The Galileo AR App
Users downloaded the official app and then pointed their mobile device’s camera at the television during the broadcast of AR-enabled feature stories.
11 Augmented Reality TV Episodes
During the themed AR week, “Galileo” aired a total of eleven feature stories. Each of them was marked with a special white frame that triggered the AR experience within the app. The linear stories were extended by augmented 3D models, information boards, and interactive games and graphics. The augmented objects offered an enhanced viewing experience, as well as additional information on the topic of the respective feature story.
Multiple Choice Quizzes
Elements Surrounding Screen
Cooking Recipe Lists
ProSieben/Galileo wanted to entice the public with a visual presentation of how many other viewers were downloading and using the AR app. These statistics served as an effective tool for recruiting more viewers onto the app, and for wooing potential advertising partners. They also provided a metric for our marketing efforts.
The Galileo AR week grew into a flagship project for eyecandylab. It demonstrated the eagerness of the public to engage with AR content on television - with an impressive 20% of viewers downloading and using the AR viewer app. Its success led to similar partnerships with many more television networks from around the world.