Peer Hires Zenly’s Mapping Experts To Build Its Upcoming, AR-Based Social Network – CryptoNewsTo

Peer Hires Zenly’s Mapping Experts To Build Its Upcoming, AR-Based Social Network

The augmented reality and metaverse startup Peer has scored a major win with the hiring of one of the most talented engineering teams in the industry to develop its artificial intelligence-powered 3D maps. The “Wonka” engineering team, as it’s nicknamed, has a lot of prestige having previously created an innovative 3D social maps platform for Zenly, the popular social mapping app that was downloaded more than 160 million times. 

Zenly was later acquired by Snap, which recently announced it will be shutting the unique service down, but Peer’s founder and chief executive Tony Tran promised that its unique maps will live on in a superior form. 

“Zenly users adored its polished and delightful features,” he said. “We’re huge fans as well, and we look forward to working with the Wonka team to recreate that magic and take it to the next level.”

The plan is for Peer to fast-track the development of its upcoming gamified social network, which is set to launch on Android and iOS devices in the coming months. 

Peer is building an entirely new kind of augmented reality metaverse that integrates AR with AI and blockchain technology to create a unique, planet-scale 3D map. Within it, users are promised an immersive, game-like social experience quite unlike anything else. One of the core aspects of Peer is that users will be able to build their own, personalized “places graph”, which can be thought of as an AR map of people, places and memories they have previously experienced. The idea is that it will make day-to-day navigation easier and allow users to revisit their memories in real-world locations whenever they return to them, and also discover new memories in new locations shared by others. 

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In other words, Peer is a kind of AR-based social media network, and though users will be able to explore it with any mobile device, the company is also planning to launch its own AR headset and glasses later in the year to provide a more immersive experience. 

Tran explained that Peer’s 3D maps will sit at the intersection of the digital and physical worlds, allowing users to interact with both at the same time. “We see it as a globally connected experience,” he continued. “This is an opportunity to create an exciting new world and bring back the emotional connection and sense of belonging that has been stripped from today’s social networks.”

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The Peer app will incorporate many of the features loved by Zenly’s 35 million-strong user base, said Wonka’s former lead engineer Milan Bulat, who is now Peer’s Head of Maps. “Peer will completely transform the way people experience their world,” he promised. 

Given its links to Zenly, Peer is likely to appeal to millions of its former users and it is not ignorant of that fact. With Zenly now inaccessible, Peer is welcoming fans of the app, as well as anyone else who’s interested, to go to and secure their usernames ahead of its app launch. Those who sign up now will gain early access as well as some exclusive rewards, including “secret moves, unlocks and other engaging gamified features,” Peer said.

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