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Why Wait for iOS 11? Holo App Does Awesome AR Now

One of the most anticipated features of Apple's iOS 11 software is its ability to let developers create all kinds of cool augmented reality experiences. But what if you could get a taste of Apple's AR future right now?

That's where Holo comes in. It's a free new app for iOS and Android, and it lets you superimpose all kinds of silly characters into pictures and videos of the real world.

Using Holo is extremely simple. You pick a character, resize and rotate them until they look exactly how you want them to, and then snap a photo or video. So far, I've taken pictures of Spider-Man watching TV in my living room, a tiger sitting on the couch with my dog, and a Donald Trump impersonator giving a speech from the palm of my hand. It's good, dumb fun.

There are a healthy amount of holograms from different brands and influencers, though they mostly boil down to two main categories: dancers and cute animals. You can have Matt Steffanina bust some moves in your hallway, make Nyjah Huston kickflip down the street, or have zombies, monkeys and dogs hang out in your bedroom. I had the most fun using the suite of Spider-Man: Homecoming animations, because who wouldn't want to have Spidey hanging in their house?

Holo is a mixed bag in terms of the actual quality of the holograms. The tiger I put next to my helpless dog looked nearly believable, while some of the human holograms were unpleasantly grainy. The main menu that lets you find new holograms is a bit messy, and I would have appreciated a search function. But my biggest gripe is that you can only display one hologram at a time; after all, it'd be a lot of fun to stuff virtual versions of Spider-Man, Donald Trump and a bunch of dogs into the same video.

Holo might not be the most robust AR app out there, but it's a lot of fun to use and could serve as a preview of what iOS might be capable later this year. It's certainly worth trying out for free, if for no other reason than to fill your camera roll with pictures of dancing zombies and smiling monkeys hanging out all over your actual world.

Michael Andronico

Mike Andronico is Senior Writer at CNNUnderscored and was formerly Managing Editor at Tom's Guide. When not at work, you can usually catch him playing Street Fighter, devouring Twitch streams and trying to convince people that Hawkeye is the best Avenger.