By Rodney Guzman, CEO/CDO/Co-Founder/Owner
A sweet spot for Hololens is taking a physical object and making it look more awesome with virtual content. This aligns perfectly to showroom events where you are rolling out new product and you want to impress how amazing it is. But how easy is that to pull off in an augmented reality experience? Given the cost you might be quoted to get an app like this completed, you might think that augmented and virtual reality has a long way to go before it goes mainstream.
Many companies approached us to solve the “make my product look amazing” problem.
A great example is with cars. A car is a sizable physical object that you can walk around. Augmented objects will be automatically occluded by the Hololens which greatly enhances the entire experience. When you stand in front of the vehicle, for example, you will not see an augmented object sitting off the rear bumper. A car does quite a bit that you cannot see with the naked eye. For example, there are sensors everywhere for safety systems. Hololens can be used to make your car come to life even when it is at rest, and spoon-feed content to average consumers about all the amazing engineering before them that they cannot normally see.
We decided that we did not want to be creating a new app for each experience.
A single app would download 3D objects from a secure cloud repository. The content would be manipulated and placed in the appropriate location around your product. Manipulations would include scale, rotation, and placement in the 3D environment. The app would automatically parse 3D objects so that no special packaging would be necessary. This is where a lot of engineering occurred because no native Unity parser we could find actually consistently parsed 3D objects correctly, so we had to create our own.
Placement of the 3D objects can take time, so we did not want to force someone to setup content every time they had a new event.
If you put your objects around your product in one showroom, we created a template from your manipulations that could be re-loaded in a different location. Once loaded in the different location, all the objects are manipulated as a group and placed around your product. So you have only to spend time once in 3D object placement, and can re-use that effort over and over.
If you have a new 3D object that you need to use, there is no re-compiling of the app.
Upload your 3D object to the cloud-based repository and it will be automatically downloaded to your Hololens for manipulation. Additionally, if you have different products to augment (such as a sedan and a truck), 3D objects are easily managed in collections so you can organize your content effectively.
When one of your customers puts on a Hololens, the app is running and they see your product fully augmented.
When the customer gazes upon an augmented object, the object activates and animates. They have to do nothing but look at your product and it will come to life in augmented reality. We call this app the Hololens Showroom. If you have questions about this, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.