In order to further overseas tourism to Japan, Japan Tourism Agency is working in conjunction with Sanrio to utilize the Hello Kitty character in a tourist information app for the iPhone. The new app, called "Visit Japan with Hello Kitty," launched September 3, 2012 and is available in several languages. Because of Hello Kitty's hugely popular appeal worldwide, it was a perfect choice for JTA.
The app has three features: "On-Site Kitty," a guide function that provides information about tourist destinations in all of Japan's prefectures; AR (augmented reality) Camera function, which tells the user the location of the nearest tourist destination. For each destination, there is an "On-Site Kitty" character that represents that location and will appear on the screen, ready to have its picture taken with the user. The third feature is a collection function, which records and arranges the pictures the user takes when traveling in Japan for easy viewing later.
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