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June 2016

Promote your Tourist Destination in Virtual Reality

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Promoting a tourist detination has always been a difficult task. It’s hard to showcase how magnificent a destination is without actually being there. Photos can look great however they will never quite come close to the actual experience as most places need to be seen to be believed!

Using the latest in VR 360 degree technology we can bring your customers as close to the real experience as possible. Imagine the immerseive experience of flying over your destination in virtual reality and landling right on a featured area and showcasing the amazing destination in full 360 degree video or photos. With our specialist equipment we can capture a tourist destination from all the best angles wheather it’s under the beautiful crystal clear ocean, in the bright blue sky or on a dreamy beach or resort, we’ve got it covered.

Our promotional 360 degree videos and photos can be created for any kind of marketing campaign you desire. Our videos and photos are Social Media friendly i.e Facebook, Youtube, Flickr etc and can be viewed from any compatible mobile device, VR Headset or P.C.

When shooting a 360 degree video we make sure that it is captured in the highest resolution possible to ensure that your audience can view it in the highest definition available from their device. Our 360 video camera rigs can capture upto 10K+ Video resolution when required, however due to the lack of technology advancement the max output on most devices currently is 4K which our videos can downscale for.

 

As an alternative to 360 degree video, you can try 360 degree photography. 360 degree photography has become hugely popular on Facebook due to the recent enablement of 360 photos. We can consult with you on the best ways to create a viral online or social media marketing campaign to promote your destination.

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Facebook 360 Photos

 

Facebook has recently ntroduced it’s new feature of 360 photos last week announced by Mark Zuckerberg (CEO of Facebook), the spherical photos can be uploaded to the timeline by all users. App updates will be required for most  iOS and Android devices to enable 360-degree photo viewing support to smartphones.

“We’re improving photos on Facebook so that people can share more immersive views of their world,” quoted Andy Huang (Facebook Product Manager), “For the first time, you can now easily share 360 photos on Facebook.”

When uploading  a 360 photo to Facebook it’s pretty simple: you state by taking take images using a 360 camera rig or possibly a VR camera or you can use the panoramic photo function on more modern samrt phones and then upload it on Facebook as you would any other image. On the upper right-hand corner of the uploaded 360 image, there will be a compass icon to let you know that the image is a 360 photo. You can click on the image by dragging it, the user can scroll around the photograph on their desktop, smartphone, tablet or VR headset.

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Although Facebook supports the spherical images, it does not have the capacity to take 360-degree photos. Andy Huang has recommended taking 360 photos using a 360 app or 360 camera.

Samsung has reached the top of the list for the most compatible smart phones, its users will have a virtual reality feature. Samsung users can select the “view in VR” button and connect their device to a Samsung Gear VR headset which users can receive a fully immersive 360 experience.

All users will have the ability to share 360 photos with their social network and also discover content from family, fan pages, friends, companies and public figures.

Similar to 360 videos on Facebook, PC users will be able to click and drag 360 degree photos to see different parts of the photo, this has been said to be an amazing new feature for the product marketing world and will take marketing and promotional photography to a whole new level of audience engagement.

For the people who don’t have a 360 camera,  most 360 photos will likely come from panoramic shots taken with smart phones and tablets. There also some great new mobile applications for taking 360 photos emerging onto the market for those people that don’t have a 360 camera.

 

If you have Samsung or particular android phone you can use the Samsung Gear VR  headset. At present there aren’t many other choices for those who don’t use Samsung or similar android phones because Facebook doesn’t support other headsets at present. Another option is Google Cardboard and also Oculus VR which is owned by Facebook.

Facebook are the pioneers of social media to host 360 media. YouTube has also added 360 video support to it’s viewing repertoire with Yahoo’s Flickr following closely behind.
Many large tech companies are in the race to complete for 360 content creation platforms. Facebook recently announced that a 360 video camera rig it has up it’s sleve developer conference that will be available to all users for a hefty price.

Virtual Reality Can Change your life

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Virtual Reality is the buzz industry at the centre point of Asia’s largest technology fair, Computex, being held in Taiwan’s capital Taipei this week. Taipei is hoping to become a virtual reality technology hub of not just Asia but the entire world. Even though VR is currently gravitating towards gamers, its pioneers forecast it will eventually be about much more than entertainment.

Raymond Pao (Vice President of VR Technology HTC) stated “We know that gaming will be the first wave of revenue and gamers the first wave of consumers, but our vision is larger than gaming”. HTC have released its first Virtual Reality headset calledVive. the Vice President mentioned that any industry that could use 3D may well end up utilising the technology.

HTC is among major tech companies such as Samsung and Facebook that have latched onto the platform of immersive experience which is forecast to become a very large market. With the HTC Vive headset strapped to their heads, users at Computex virtually flew over New York tossing grenades at enemies on a road of a ghost town.

HTC have immerged into the medical industry too. The company invested in 2015 in a US start-up company that usilises VR to help surgeons plan and practise complex brain surgery. Education and retail are also forecast to be the next frontier for virtual reality and its sister, augmented reality.

While VR devices place users in fantasy worlds, augmented reality adds another layer of holograms to the actual view. Zhu Bo (founder of InnoValley) stated “What we learn from textbooks or labs can be really dull, but VR and AR will greatly enhance learning abilities,”.

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Not a fad

The global market size of virtual reality products has been estimated to reach US $5.1 billion this year and is projected to more than double to US $10.9 billion by 2017. According to Taipei-based intelligence provider TrendForce. Sony will soon be launching its VR headgear for Playstation later this year. Google is also coming up with a new VR platform called Daydream.  The British firm called  ARM ahs also made the announcement earlier this week that its new processors will enable mobile phones to use virtual and augmented reality features by 2017. Microsoft the US technology giant  have stated that its software will be compatible with mixed reality devices.

 

April 2016

Monoscopic 360 Video

When you’re first starting out with 360 video it’s difficult to find information on the differences between monoscopic 360° video and stereoscopic video. We’ve created these articles to assist you in the differentiation between the 2.

Before we start on the difference on monoscopic 360° video vs. stereoscopic 360° videos, let’s start by defining 360° video. A 360° video is simply a flat equirectangular video that is made into a spherical video for playback on a Samsung VR or Oculus Rift headset. If a 360 degree video is monoscopic, it means that both of your eyes see a singlular flat image, or video. If a 360° video is stereoscopic, it means there are two videos, one mapped to each of your eyes, providing better 3D appearance and much better depth. When filming in monoscopic equirectangular video you are looking at a maximum output resolution of 3480×1920 at 30 frames per second and 2880×1340 at 60 fps.

One of the most common 360 video set ups you will see being used is the monoscopic 6 camera rig which has 6 cameras set up to cover 6 different angles of equirectangular video. The most commonly used videos for VR are monoscopic 360 degree videos. Monoscopic 360° video is usually filmed with a single camera per field of view as opposed to dual cameras sharing the same field of view (FOV) and stitched together to form a singlular equirectangular video. The reason that monoscopic videos are more common is beacuse they are easier to stitch together, less time consuming and much more cost effective for both consumers and businesses.

Make sure that you make the right choice when choosing to film monoscopic video vs stereoscopic. Stereoscopic will always have a better resolution.

Below is an example of a monoscopic 360° video rig

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monoscopic 360° video rig example

Below is an example of a monoscopic 360° video taken using 6 Gopro action cameras

 

Stereoscopic 360 Video

What is Stereoscopic video? It’s a recreation as close as possible to mimic how we see through our 2 eyes. To create true stereoscopic video you needs to have atleast 2 cameras pointing in the same direction covering each angle. The reason the cameras are mounted side by side is to replicate the positioning of the human eyes so viewers can experience a full 360 x 180 degree stereoscopic sperical video in high resolution.

Below are some stereoscopic rig examples:

 

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Have a look at the below Stereoscopic youtube video taken through a stereoscopic 360 video rig. Please note you may need to view this video in your mobile app or through the actual Youtube website to get full effect of the spherical video.

 

March 2016

3140 Clay Street, San Francisco, CA

3140 Clay Street, San Francisco, CA

Over are the days of scouring the internet for apartments, only to find they don’t live up to their photos in-person. This Space gives you a true sense of urban living in this ground-floor one-bedroom with private backyard.

This Space gives you a true sense of urban living in this ground-floor one-bedroom.