Along with the announcement that the first consumer phone with Tango on board (Lenovo's Phab 2 Pro) is now shipping, Google announced 35 Tango-supported apps to coincide with the phone's launch. Google also said that it expects more AR-ready phones to make their debut some time in 2017.
Tango's capabilities have been teased since the project was revealed in 2014. Tango allows for motion tracking, room-scale localization, AR overlays, and more. But most of these revelations have come in the form of technical demos--the Phab 2 Pro's launch marks the first time many consumers will be able to use Tango themselves.
The launch apps range from Measure, a tool that allows you to use your phone to measure anything in your homes, to an AR game called Domino World that lets you play dominoes without having to worry about picking all the pieces up afterwards. The debut lineup also includes Lowe's interior decorating tool, an at-scale simulator of the solar system, and a paint-shooting game called Crayola Color Blaster, among others.
Google explained in its blog post that these apps are just the beginning of its ambitions for Tango:
We see the potential for Tango technologies to be in every smartphone in the future. In the same way you wouldn’t consider buying a phone today without a camera or GPS, Tango will be a ubiquitous capability to help your phone better understand space and the world around you. There will be more Tango-enabled phones coming in the new year and we can’t wait for you to explore, learn and play.
Tango is just part of Google's efforts to capture the AR market. The company invested $500 million into a startup called Magic Leap, which is working on AR so compelling it decided to call it "cinematic reality" instead, and it also worked with the Smithsonian to create AR experiences for a display at the National Museum of African American History and Culture.