Arcaching: Using Augmented Reality on Mobile Devices to Improve Geocachers’ Experiences
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Geocaching is an outdoor treasure-hunting game that uses GPS and mobile devices to assist players in the quest of finding a geocache — a cleverly hidden physical container with a log and other items inside. The current game’s smartphone interface provides the GPS location of a geocache on a map that updates as the user gets closer to the hidden location. However, constantly checking in with the map to correct one’s location can substantially reduce situational awareness, which can become a quite a danger, as the user wanders through the woods or up a cliff to find a geocache. ARCaching is an Android-based augmented reality (AR) mobile application that facilitates navigation to a geocache and also increases situational awareness by combining environmental information gathered by the camera and overlapping it with rendered images to aid the players in their quest. ARCaching uses BeyondAR as an augmented reality browser to guide players to a cache while still providing pertinent information about the environment to help reduce risk. ARCaching was developed and evaluated against the original Geocaching.com application to determine how the user experience is affected by the AR technology. Results showed that AR while geocaching can facilitate the task of searching for caches and improves the user experience.
Villaneuva Luna, Nahum (2017). Arcaching: Using Augmented Reality on Mobile Devices to Improve Geocachers’ Experiences. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from