Google announces the full release of Expeditions AR and updates to its Expeditions app (do not confuse with a 3D configurator).

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In a continuing vote of confidence in VR & AR technology as an influential classroom tool, Google today made its limited Google Expeditions AR Tours program available to the public free of charge. To date, the Expeditions AR Pioneer program has only been available to one happy million students over the last school year. The informative tool has recently been made available for everyone to download via the Google Expeditions App for Android and iOS.

Since its first launch just three years ago, the Google Expeditions program has conducted over 800 immersive technology VR tours to some of the most exotic and historic places in the world. The company recently unveiled its Tour Creator, a web-based VR development tool that allows even beginners to create their own 360-degree tours with personal images or from Google Street View.

With its new label Google AR & VR, the innovative tech giant has officially made its Expeditions AR tour program available to the public free of charge, with 100 AR tours that can be explored directly from the gate.

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While Expeditions VR has focused more on transporting users to remote locations, this AR counterpart focuses on delivering art, animals and other culturally significant objects you can find there.

“We’ve seen first hand how powerful a VR tool is for Google Places, but we think Augmented Reality (AR) is the best way to learn more about the things you’ll find there,” says Google in his blog post. “Imagine walking into your classroom around a life-size African elephant or imagining ancient Greek statues on your desk.

“AR takes abstraction and makes it concrete for students. For example, a beating heart could be visualized on a desk,” Darin Nakakihara from the Irvine school district said.

Google has also made some changes to the Expedition app to help you find new tours to explore, track your own creations, and easily start your own solo adventure. Schools can now purchase the very first Expeditions AR/VR kits through Best Buy Education.

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