This is how Mark Zuckerberg introduced Augmented Reality at the F8 keynote, Facebook's developer conference earlier this week:
We all know where we want this to get eventually. We want glasses or eventually contact lenses that look and feel normal, but that let us overlay all kinds of information and digital objects on top of the real world. So we can just be sitting here and if we want to play chess, *snap*, here's a chessboard and we can play together. If you want to watch tv, then we can put a digital tv on the wall, and instead of being a piece of hardware, it's a $1 app, instead of a $500 piece of equipment.
The AR technology demoed was impressive: computer vision, 3D mapping, AI integration, and much more. Unfortunately, while technically impressive, they seemed to leave the audience a little underwhelmed. This is because most of the demos were forced through the viewport of a smartphone - because that is what's possible today.
Take, for example, the video of the family waiting at the doctor's office playing an AR game. The game was a tower defense variant played on the coffee table in front of them. As the kids slapped the table, the creatures on screen shook or were destroyed. The technology to do this is impressive. But the interaction itself is underwhelming because the action is constrained to a tiny 5-inch screen.
I suspect this is why Mark chose to talk about AR glasses so early. AR will fail to impress until we can be fully immersed.
Facebook is skating to where the puck will be - in 7 to 10 years.