There have been several AR apps for phones and tablets that provide an overlay on PCBs that offers in-depth information on circuit design and even electronics placement, such as KAIST’s VirtualComponent, and Ted Yapo’s AR Workbench. DebuggAR is another company taking advantage of AR overlays, with an app of the same name, which is designed for debugging PCBs using a smartphone or tablet and allows users to analyze signals, layers, and components.
According to the company, the app enables you to see information about the board- design details, and other information, by hovering your mobile device above the board, including signal traces, pinouts, and component locations. Users can use the information to debug their designs, rework them if necessary, and even overlay designs onto a physical PCB.
The DebuggAR app uses built-in X-ray vision, which lets you toggle between layers to identify signals and traces. It also features a search function to locate components on the board- view pin-mappings for ICs, capacitors, diodes, and even their correct orientations. Signal mapping lets users inspect various signal paths for crucial information, such as voltage drops, and highlight those paths, giving users the ability to understand where to probe, cut traces if needed or sniff with a logic analyzer.
The app works with design files created using Eagle and Altium, although DebuggAR states that support for Gerber, ODB++, KiCad, and Cadence will be coming soon. The app is currently in Beta form, and those interested can sign up to test the app before it launches.