Getting Started

Vuforia is the worlds most widely used platform for AR development, with support for leading phones, tablets and eyewear.

Developers can easily add advanced computer vision functionality to Android, iOS and UWP apps, to create AR experiences that realistically interact with objects and the environment.

Over 60,000 Vuforia Engine-powered applications have been published on the App Store and Google Play. Vuforia also supports an active developer ecosystem with more than 500,000 registered developers and more than 45,000 projects in development.

Ground breaking features in Vuforia 7

Vuforia 7 introduces Model Targets, a new feature for recognizing objects by shape using existing 3D models. With Model Targets, content can be attached to objects such as automobiles and appliances, as well as industrial equipment and machinery, enabling a new class of AR content that can replace traditional user manuals and technical service instructions.

Vuforia 7 also introduces a highly anticipated new capability for placing content on horizontal surfaces. Ground Plane enables content to be placed on the ground, floor or tabletop, whether indoors or outdoors. It extends the functionality of the Vuforia Smart Terrain feature with planar surface detection and positional tracking. Vuforia Ground Plane will support a wide range of today’s devices and provides an ideal solution for developers to build visualization apps, ranging from in-home furniture shopping to design review.

Vuforia Ground Plane and  Model Targets leverage Vuforia Fusion, a new capability designed to provide the best possible AR experience on a wide range of devices. Vuforia Fusion solves the problem of fragmentation in AR-enabling technologies, including cameras, sensors, chipsets, and software frameworks such as ARKit. It senses the capabilities of the underlying device and fuses them with Vuforia features, allowing developers to rely on a single Vuforia API for an optimal AR experience. Vuforia Fusion brings advanced Vuforia features to ARKit-enabled devices,  and many other Android and iOS device models.

Unity Integration

The Vuforia Engine is natively integrated with Unity, and delivered with the Unity Editor. You can install Vuforia using the Unity Download Assistant or from the Editor’s XR Settings panel.

The Vuforia Unity Integration provides even easier development workflows and tighter synchronization of new features and bug fixed with Unity versions.

Vuforia’s licensing options have changed as well, and now include a free deployable option for Unity developers.

There is also a new Vuforia developer forum at


The Vuforia app development platform enables you to create AR experiences for a range of objects and environments.

Model Targets for recognizing objects by their shape using existing 3D models

Ground Plane for placing content on horizontal surfaces in your environment

Image Targets for experiences that use flat images, such as print media and magazines

VuMarks for identifying and augmenting specific objects as part of a series, such as toys and consumer products

Multi-Targets are collections of Image Targets in a defined arrangement. They're a good choice for boxes, product packaging, and even billboards.

Cylinder Targets enable you to use bottles and cans, or any cylindrical image, in AR apps.

User Defined Targets allow you to use camera images, captured by users, as Image Targets

Object Recognition enables Object Targets to be created by scanning physical objects. It allows you to create apps that recognize and track intricate rigid objects.

Vuforia also supports AR+VR apps with head tracking  and an easy to use Mixed Reality API.

Platform Components

There are three main components to the Vuforia platform.

1. The Vuforia Engine
The Vuforia Engine is the client side library that is statically linked to your app. This is available through the client SDK and supports Android, iOS, and UWP. You may use Android Studio, Xcode, Visual Studio, or Unity – the cross platform game engine – to build apps.

2. Tools
Vuforia provides tools for creating targets, managing target databases and securing application licenses.

The Vuforia Model Target Generator ( available for Android ) enables you generate targets from a 3D model of a physical object. 

The Vuforia Object Scanner (available for Android) helps you easily scan 3D objects into a target format that is compatible with the Vuforia Engine.

The Target Manager is a web app on the developer portal that allows you to create databases of targets for use on the device and the cloud (for large numbers of targets)

Developers building apps for optical see-through digital eyewear can make use of the Calibration Assistant which enables end-users to create personalized profiles that suit their unique facial geometry. The Vuforia Engine can then use this profile to ensure that content is rendered in the right position.

All applications need a license key to work. The License Manager allows you to create and manage your license keys and associated service plans. Learn More

3. Cloud Recognition Service
Vuforia also offers a Cloud Recognition Service for when your app needs to recognize a large set of images or if the database is frequently updated. The Vuforia Web Services API allows you to manage these large image databases in the cloud efficiently and enables you to automate your workflows by direct integration into your content management systems.

Support for Digital Eyewear

Vuforia supports leading digital eyewear devices providing both optical and video see-through options for hand-free AR applications.

   Video see-through devices:         Vuzix M300 

   Optical see-through devices:      ODG R-7+, HoloLens, and Epson BT-200

A range of AR+VR viewers are also supported, such as Merge VR and Google Cardboard.

Developer Support

There are over 375,000 developers in more than a 100 countries using Vuforia today. This thriving community interacts daily on the community Forums, where there are thousands of posts on a range of topics. A library of Guides, Best Practices and How-To articles enables developers to not only learn about key Vuforia features, but to also get valuable practical support for actual issues that developers had to deal with when building apps.

Unity Installation & Activation

The Vuforia Unity Integration allows developers to easily create AR applications and games using the Unity game engine.

Vuforia is compatible with all versions of the Unity Editor for Android, iOS and UWP apps.

You can obtain Unity from

When you install the Unity Editor, select Vuforia Augmented Reality Supported in the Download Assistant. If you already have Unity 2017.2 or greater installed, select to install Vuforia from XR Settings.

Once installed, enable Vuforia Augmented Reality Support in XR Settings for your project.

See: Getting Started with Vuforia in Unity

Getting Started with Visual Studio (C++) for UWP development

If you are a Windows UWP developer and already have Visual Studio 2015 and Universal Windows App Development Tools installed, proceed directly to Step 2 below.

  1. Setting up the UWP Development Environment
  2. Getting Started with Vuforia for Windows 10 Development

Getting Started with XCode (C++) for iOS development

If you are an iOS developer and have already set up your iOS development environment, go directly to the section "Installing the Vuforia iOS SDK" in the article linked below.

Note that iOS SDK 8.0 or above with XCode 7.x or later is recommended for use with Vuforia.

Getting Started with Android Studio (Java/C++) for Android development

If you are an Android developer and already have the Android SDK and NDK installed, see the section "Installing the Vuforia Android SDK" in the article linked below.

Getting Started with Digital Eyewear

If you have worked with Vuforia, then building apps for digital eyewear should be very familiar. All the APIs, tools and workflows are very similar.  Get Started.