handheld augmented reality

Augmented Reality Anywhere and Anytime   


   Social Augmented Reality

   Information Presentation

   Real-Time Self Localization

   Structural Modelling

   AR Graphics

   AR Navigation

   Augmented Reality Games

   Past Projects



   Hybrid SLAM

   Panorama SLAM

   Planar SLAM

   Model-Based Tracking

   Marker-Based Tracking


Software Libraries

   Studierstube ES

   Studierstube Tracker










   Student projects


   Site map


The Handheld Augmented Reality
Project is supported by the
following institutions:



Christian Doppler Forschungsgesellschaft


Graz University of Technology




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Studierstube ES


This page is an overview of our in-house technology, which is not available to the public. For an overview of available AR frameworks from our group check this page: Framework availability


Our all new software framework Studierstube ES is a second general handheld AR platform. Written from scratch in mid of 2006 it represents a radical new way of doing Augmented Reality (AR) on handheld devices. Other than previous attempts it makes no compromises by using software that was primarily written for other platforms. Studierstube ES was designed from ground up to make best use of the handheld platforms.

Studierstube ES operates cross-platform (Windows, Windows CE and Symbian) and addresses graphics, video, tracking, multimedia, persistent storage, multi-user synchronisation and application authoring tools.

It offers the richest feature set and highest performance for developing Augmented Reality applications on handheld devices at the commercial market as well as in academia. It is based on over ten years of development of AR software and five years of specialization on handheld devices. As a result, Studierstube ES offers some unique features that enable handheld devices to run AR applications that were previously deemed impossible. It allows targeting a wide variety of devices (Windows CE and Symbian, with and without embedded 3D graphics acceleration) and has a convenient high-level API with cross-platform emulation capabilities.



Other than traditional stationary AR systems, mobile handheld devices give the unique possibility to allow thousands of user to share their Augmented Reality experience. For setups such as multi-user games or collaborative applications, a powerful client software is not enough: A strong and prototyping capable networking middleware is needed that allow connecting those clients. Studierstube ES is includes networking extensions that make it easy to create shared applications and games. While it can run standalone, the true power of handheld Augmented Reality becomes available when combining it with its server-side counterparts.

Highlights of the Client Software

  • Supports
    • Windows CE (major target platform)
    • Symbian (target platform)
    • iPhone (experimental target platform)
    • Linux (target and development platform)
    • Windows 2k/XP (target and development platform)
  • Highly configurable to optimally use available hardware
  • Highly optimized fixed-point math classes
  • Small memory footprint (~500KB minimum for a useable system)
  • Support for OpenGL ES 1.x, OpenGL ES 2.x, OpenGL, and Direct3D Mobile
  • Dedicated render paths for software and hardware 3D accelerated devices
  • Lightweight XML-based scene graph for rapid application development
  • Integration of Studierstube Tracker
  • Content protection, binds Studierstube ES to a specific device and protectes against reading or modifying the content outside the application

Applications built with Studierstube ES

Studierstube ES has been the basis for several projects:

  • Cows vs. Aliens, a networked, multi-player game
  • Signpost2007, the location aware conference guide
  • Vidente, city sub-surface data visualization
  • Sphinx, a game engine for creating Augmented Reality museum adventure games
  • Invisible Train 2007, a remake of the well known Invisible Train of 2003
  • Various commercial projects...


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