How to Create Area Targets

In this guide, you will get acquainted with the process for creating Area Targets using the Vuforia Area Target Generator (ATG). Area Targets are generated from a scanned model of an area. The target can afterwards easily be imported to your Unity project or native development environment.

Workflow Overview

  1. Capture an area or space with one of the supported devices. See Scanning Guide Using Matterport™ .
  2. Create the Area Target using the Vuforia Area Target Generator.
  3. Test the target in the real environment using the Area Target Test App.
  4. Develop your application by importing the dataset files into your AR project.

Alternatively, spaces can also be captured and the Area Target created with a device that has ARKit enabled and inbuilt LiDAR via the Vuforia Area Target Creator App.

Capturing the Space

Vuforia supports ARKit enabled devices with inbuilt LiDAR and the Matterport™ Pro2 3D Camera to capture, create, and distribute 3D models of a space. The supported devices have different processes and strengths when it comes to scanning an area. 

Using the Vuforia Area Target Creator app extends its capabilities to scan, create, and test your Area Target, all within one session and application. It is also possible to transfer the Area Target databases to i.e. Unity to build your AR experience. Our guides on Scanning an Environment and the Vuforia Area Target Creator App contain useful information for scanning with a handheld device. 

The Matterport™ camera, being a professional scanner, will capture a space that is uploaded and processed on their servers as a MatterPak™ that needs to be purchased. The ATG can thereafter be used to retrieve the data needed for target generation from the Matterport™ service. For details on how to scan the space, please refer to the Scanning Guide Using Matterport™ library page or consult an introduction video or PDF resources at the Matterport™ website. It will aid you with everything from setting up a Matterport™ account to preparing, scanning, and uploading a scanned space.

Starting the Area Target Generator

If you haven’t already done so, download the Area Target Generator (ATG) installer for either Windows or macOS from the download section in the Vuforia Developer Portal, and proceed to install the software tool. Consult the guide; Area Target Generator User Guide for installation tips and general use.

  1. Start by entering your Vuforia Developer Credentials.

Creating an Area Target

  1. To create an Area Target, click the New Area Target from Matterport™ Scan button.
  2. The next window will ask you to enter the Token ID and Token Secret associated with your Matterport™ account. Refer to the Area Target Generator User Guide Matterport™ Token ID section for guidance on requesting and inserting the Token ID and Token Secret.

  1. In the new window, fill in the Scanned Space and choose a name for the Area Target as shown below:

  1. Enter in the Scanned Space field the Matterport™ SpaceID, a unique 11-digit ID that is associated with your individual scans. To find the unique ID of your scan you would like to use to create the Area Target, open the space in your Matterport™ account. Copy the entire URL, or just the SpaceID portion as marked below and paste it into the Scanned Space field.

  1. Enter the target name into the Area Target Name field.
    NOTE: The Area Target name should be without spaces and only consist of letters, numbers, underscores or dashes. A maximum of 64 characters is allowed.
  2. Continue the process by verifying that the folder location for saving the Area Target database is suitable, modify as required.
  3. Click Create Area Target.
  4. The following window will indicate how many targets you have remaining. When you press continue and generate an Area Target, one target count will be subtracted from your quota. Re-creating an Area Target from the same model counts as new and will be subtracted. For specific quota options associated with any license, refer to the pricing page. The free Vuforia Developer License starts with a quota of 10 Area Targets.

Area Target Generation Process

A log about the downloading, processing, and generation of the Area Target is shown during the creation process that is visualized with the progress bar. If you wish, you can stop the process by pressing Cancel.

  1. Once the process is complete, an OK button will be available. By pressing it, you will return to the Home Screen.
  2. The generated Dataset is available in the selected folder to be imported into the Unity Editor.

Testing your Area Target

To quickly verify the result of the generation process and you can return to the area that you have scanned and created an Area Target from, you can load your Database to the Area Target Test App and try it out. Consult the Area Target Test App User Guide for more information on this topic.

Develop Using the Area Target

Head to the Area Targets in Unity page where you can learn to use the target in Unity, including testing it in the Vuforia Simulator Play Mode. As an alternative import your Area Targets to your Native development Environment for building your AR experience.

Learn More

Area Target Test App User Guide

Area Targets in Unity

Area Targets in Native Workflow

Area Target Generator User Guide

Scanning Guide using Matterport™

Best Practices for Preparing and Scanning an Environment

Vuforia Area Target Creator App