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Industry News, News and Updates, VR

Since the day Oculus first made their announcement that they will be releasing not just one but two VR headsets by early 2019, devout VR fanatics have been patiently waiting for the arrival of the exciting hardware. Fast-forward to today, the Oculus Quest and Rift S have been available for pre-orders for about 2 weeks. Best Buy, Amazon, and Oculus have been bombarded with purchase orders for these virtual reality headsets, forcing retailers to host multiple waves of shipments. If you have placed a pre-order right when it went live, you could be one of the lucky individuals that may receive their headset from the first wave of shipments set to be released on May 21st. If you’re still stuck on deciding on which VR headset to purchase, we’ve got you covered.


Understandably, most people when making a purchase automatically look at the price first as a determinant of whether they want the item or not. However, when it comes to deciding between the Rift S and the Quest, you won’t be able to use this tactic. Both VR headsets are priced at $399 USD, making your purchase decision based on both the performance and whether it answers your needs. If this seems overwhelming and daunting to you, not to worry. Let’s take a look at both headsets, their features and capabilities.


Oculus Rift S

The Oculus Rift S is a tethered headset, which means you will have to connect it to a compatible PC to use it. If the name rings a bell, you’re not wrong. The first headset Oculus released was named the “Rift”, and as the name suggests, the new release is cut from a similar cloth. The Rift S is the revamped version of their previous model, with improvements on the resolution and functionality.

Pros

Compared to their previous model, the Rift S is much easier to set up as Oculus has removed the need for external tracking stations. The previous Rift model required pole-like external tracking sensors, which could quickly become tripping hazards. Now, since their sensors are directly built into the headset, the Rift S allows you to freely roam without running the risk of breaking a necessary component of the hardware. Plus, the headset now sports 2560×1440 resolution display, allowing users to experience a virtual world in full HD. Not only is the screen experience enjoyable, but the headset itself is quite comfortable. Oculus has installed a halo strap onto the headset that is adjusted by twisting a knob at the back. This allows users to keep wearing the headset for extended periods of time without giving up comfort.


Cons

One of the biggest downsides to the Rift S is the fact that it is tethered. Even though they have upgraded the system to reduce the number of wires needed to run the headset, the wire itself is a huge limitation. Not only does it mean that the device isn’t portable, but it also means you need the necessary supporting hardware to use it. Not every PC can support the hardware, so investing in a computer compatible with the VR headset can add to the cost. In addition to computer compatibility, the Rift S can only connect to a PC via DisplayPort only — there is no HDMI port. This either means you need to have a computer that has a DisplayPort or you will need to invest in an additional external converter. Lastly, although the Rift S still has a decent refresh rate of 80HZ, it’s actually lower than the original Oculus Rift running at 90HZ. For those who may not be familiar with refresh rates, it refers to how often a device changes the image on a screen and it’s measured in frames per second (HZ). A traditional TV runs roughly at 60HZ whereas some modern TV’s can run at 120HZ. The difference between the Rift and Rift S is not huge, but it’s another element to keep in mind.


What the Rift S lacks in mobility, it makes up in a sharper and clearer screen experience. We also predict that Oculus will eventually phase out their older Rift model for the Rift S.


Oculus Quest

The Oculus Quest is the relatively more interesting release, incorporating the strong suits of their two previous headsets: the Rift and the Go. Promising to merge the strength of the Rift and the portability of the Go, the Quest is a standalone VR headset that is completely tetherless.  The Quest is incredibly powerful for being a standalone headset and answers the many barriers their previous headsets faced.


The Oculus Rift was praised for its HD quality, however the fact that the headset is tethered posed a major barrier to specific audiences. On the other end, the Go was the preferred choice for people who valued ease in taking VR on the go. But to allow this kind of freedom came at a cost of having fair quality and losing the ability to walk through a VR experience.


Now, the Quest is going to change the game.


Pros

The Quest has six degrees-of-freedom with inside-out tracking. In layman’s terms, the Quest allows you to move freely in a virtual world that is strikingly similar to movement in real life. Plus, just like the Rift S, there is no need for external tracking stations as it’s all programmed into the headset itself. This tetherless headset is powerful and portable, allowing you to bring VR with you wherever you go. The beauty of a standalone headset is that unlike the Rift series, you don’t need any external hardware to support the headset. Simply turn on the headset, look in, and be whisked away to a whole new world. In regards to comfort, the newly revamped straps are a cloth-like material with rubber straps, making this headset fit snuggly and comfortably over your head.


The Quest sounds really great, doesn’t it? Well, it does also come with its own set of limitations.


Cons

For one, in comparison to the Rift S, the headset is not as powerful. The Quest will use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 mobile processor, which is a step higher than what Oculus used for the Go. Although it is a powerful processor, it doesn’t beat the Rift S. In addition, be prepared that the Quest will not have the same fidelity as the Rift S. Since the Quest is a standalone headset, it won’t get any external support from a powerful PC like the Rift S. With the GPU limitation, textures in the Quest won’t look as sharp compared to the tethered headsets. The last downfall of the Quest will be its limited storage space. With the Rift S, running out of storage is not a problem at all, however, the Quest at its max has 128GB of memory. This could prove to be a limitation for those who need extra space for their files.


Get Ready for a New Wave of VR Headsets

Both the Oculus Rift S and Quest are equally powerful virtual reality headsets and great options if you’re looking to invest in the hardware. The upgrades that Oculus has made to their latest releases really pushes the boundaries of what we thought could be possible with a piece of VR hardware. At the end of the day, between the two headsets, one is not better than the other. Choose the headset that will be the best fit for you.



Both headsets are still available for purchase, however, they will be shipped at a later date (when we last checked, Oculus listed it will ship by May 30th).


Here at Yulio, we strive for excellence in performance and integrity when it comes to our product, and customer service. To learn more about how VR can enhance your business workflow, sign up for our FREE 5-day email course. Want to stay updated with everything or anything Yulio? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin!

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Business, Culture, Industry News, Lifestyle, News and Updates, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

Apple is one of the largest tech companies in our global economy and their products greatly influence how the world uses technology. This revolutionary tech giant continues to lead the charge in innovation while staying true to simple design, including heavy investments in VR. Just last year, Apple became the world’s first public company to hit the $1 trillion valuation, beating their Silicon Valley rivals like Amazon and Microsoft. Apple seems to have the Midas touch as so many of their products have generated international uproar and overwhelming success.


On March 26, Apple did it again.


Apple hosted another one of their special events announcing a whole new range of products and upgrades, including a highly anticipated product: the Apple Card. Almost immediately, news outlets and social media pages were flooded with talk about the future release of the card. Set to be available this Summer, the Apple Card is a blending of the physical and virtual world, which will create even greater comfort in digital tech in daily life.

 

Why Does this Matter?

The main point of the Apple Card is to give people a greater sense of control over their banking and finances in a way that isn’t confusing through the use of technology. Apple’s shift towards going digital is part of a trend to changing objects we interact with on a daily basis into virtual concepts. Additionally, the product meets their clients where they’re at. With a focus on clarity and keeping it concise, Apple made a system that appeals to the masses, especially the younger generation.


Before we dive into how and why the Apple Card will be revolutionary, let us first explore what the product is.

What is the Apple Card?

The Apple Card is a credit card created by Apple in collaboration with Goldman Sachs and MasterCard, promising to give people greater sense of their banking and finances in a clear and simple way, chiefly through visualizing data and integration with daily life. Located in its Wallet app, the Apple Card will introduce clients to a new phase of going digital.


Transparency and Utilization: The Apple Card creatively utilizes their already existing apps in addition to new card features in a simple and innovative way. From showing where a particular transaction was made with Apple Maps to their newest slide feature that clearly communicates how much interest would be charged, all of the card’s features are geared towards generating greater transparency and understanding by presenting data in new more visual ways.


New Wave of Support: Instead of calling their support hotline and waiting who knows how long before an available representative picks up the phone, simply text in your question or a change you would like to make. Expect an answer to your question in a matter of minutes.


One aspect of the Apple Card that deserves an honourable mention and has garnered a lot of design attention is the physical copy of the digital card. Along with the Apple Card, you will receive a titanium laser etched physical card for places that don’t use Apple Pay. The sleek and creative design, we predict, could be just enough to convince those interested in the product to invest in it.

 

Why is the Apple Card Important to Tech Change?
  1. Reinventing the familiar in a whole new way

Rethinking a concept or design that we are perfectly acquainted with is difficult, yet Apple does it so seamlessly. Everything now will be done digitally, which includes applying for the card, making transactions, and seeking support. Some companies don’t have a 24/7 support line, and even when you try to call, you’re met with staying on hold for who knows how long. Apple has created a solution with its new system of 24/7 text support, further improving previous processes in a new and fresh way.

  1. Leaning into the Digital Transformation

The emergence of the Apple Card gives a lot of insight as to where we are heading into the next phase of digital transformation. This is a huge step made by one of the most prolific tech companies in the world to combine a physical process with a virtual one. Especially for those who are more skeptical about virtual technology, the Apple Card is a good stepping stone. Previously, banks issuing cards would hand over the physical copy first, and then provide supplementary online software to help you track your expenses and to view your eStatements. The Apple Card completely flips that process around by providing first the virtual copy then a supplementary physical version in case stores don’t have Apple Pay. Apple is becoming another player in harnessing the power of going virtual.


  1. Generational Shift

We have previously covered who the Gen Z population are and how virtual products and experiences could be key to winning this demographic. Apple has recognized that a large portion of their clientele is made up of the younger generation, like Gen Z and Millennials. Creating a product that appeals to this demographic is a brilliant step as the younger population are entering the workforce, and will soon become contributors to the wider economy.


It’s also important to note that Apple does a difficult thing really well: they listen to their audience. It’s no surprise that the Apple physical card is designed the way it is. The current style that is on trend with the younger generation is a minimalist and neutral palette, which is exactly what the card is. With following the change of design and people’s tastes, Apple’s product caters to the evergrowing population of Gen Z and Millennials. Following the same suit is key to ensuring business in the future with a demographic that will soon account for 40% of the US consumer spending.


Speculation

The Apple AR glasses are still officially just a theory, however, there is concrete evidence that they will be on the market soon. With the release of Apple’s virtual Apple Card, we’re really curious to see how Apple may tie these two ends together. Who knows, perhaps in the foreseeable future, all you would need to do to make a purchase is to simply look at an object. However, this is still just purely speculation. We are all excited to see Apple’s new Apple Card launch in the Summer, and how the release will shape people’s perception of going virtual.


Here at Yulio, we strive for excellence in performance and integrity when it comes to our product, and customer service. Check out our Whitepaper on the right way to integrate VR into your business for maximum ROI. To learn more about us and what we offer, please visit our page or take our product tour.

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How to, News and Updates, VR

Here at Yulio, we believe that the VR experience should be simple, customizable, and intuitive. As part of our continued commitment to making Yulio the best VR presentation tool for business, we are thrilled to announce our brand new feature: Project Markup!


We value listening to our users and collecting feedback on how to make our platform better. So it only made sense that having a way to record feedback in VR projects was a frequently requested feature.  That’s why we’re excited to launch Project Markup and give you the chance to collect feedback right within the context of the VR Project.


Project Markup is now available on Enterprise plans, giving you and your clients more opportunities to dialogue right within your Project.


Project Markup allows you to provide feedback on designs all while staying within the VR environment. Launch a Collaborate session and allow your clients to see you draw directly on your project in real time. With a variety of pen and color options, you have the flexibility of providing clear and coordinated feedback to all those involved.


Let’s take a walkthrough on how to use Project Markup. Click here to see Project Markup in action and continue reading for a step-by-step guide on how to use this feature. Stay till the end for an extra tip!


How to Use Project Markup

Anyone with a Yulio seat in your account is able to use Project Markup.


Log in to your Yulio account on any computer, tablet or touchscreen device and select the project you would like to mark up.



In the editing project page, hit the Settings tab and click the Allow Project Markup toggle to enable Project Markup.



After turning on Project Markup, click on the View in 360 icon to start marking up your project.



In browser mode, pick on the pen icon on the top right-hand corner. This is the Project Markup button. The Markup tab has multiple color and pen thickness options for you to explore.



Click on the icon again if you would like to erase, change the color of your pen, the thickness of your pen, move around your project, or delete your edits.



Also, just like any of our other features, your project automatically saves so you will never need to worry about losing your work. Send your project to anyone on your team with a Yulio seat, or share your edits with a client via a Collaborate session.


To delete all your edits in a scene, click the Clear Scene icon in the VR project, or Clear All Markup on the settings page.




Or hide your edits by switching the Allow Project Markup toggle off.


An Extra Tip

Use Color Coordination to your Advantage

Project Markup currently has 5+ colors to choose from. Use this variety to your advantage by organizing your feedback using the different colors. By color coordinating your notes, it creates better clarity for anyone who will be using the feedback for future design decisions. Here is an example:



Project Markup is available for all Yulio Enterprise clients to use. To learn more about the feature and how to use it effectively, visit our knowledge base. If you would like to know more about any of our features or want extra training, contact us at hello@yulio.com.

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News and Updates, VR

We hope you have been following our blog this past year because if you have, you will know that 2018 was a big year for us at Yulio. 2018 has been the year where we have released a bunch of brand new Yulio features that can help improve and enhance your VR projects. As we continue to strive to be the best VR presentation tool for business, we hope that our features can help you achieve your goals in telling your story. Because we’ve had so many releases, we thought now would be the perfect time to round up all of Yulio’s feature releases of 2018, and what they have to offer.


Floor Plan Navigation

One of our most exciting releases came out during mid-summer of 2018 — our Floor Plan Navigation Feature.



We recognized that viewing your VR project with only hotspots, especially in a large space, may be a barrier when presenting, resulting in a point of friction. There are times you want to follow the meeting conversation and jump around your project, instead of following through from each scene. In order to combat this issue, we created this new form of navigation, bringing a version of the traditional 2D “dollhouse view” to VR. By simply uploading your floor plan or an exterior image to your VR project, match and link up your scenes with the appropriate map point. Then, you are able to present context and flow more effectively, allowing for a greater organization for your complex projects. Return to the floorplan view any time to jump around your project by clicking a map pin.


Hotspots

Hotspots are arguably the most important features when viewing your projects in VR. They allow you to add additional information to any scene and have always been the main way to navigate a project. In 2018 we added a variety of hotpot types so you can customize your project and include more information and context for your clients.


Text

Text hotspots can enhance your VR project in a variety of ways. From describing design choices, or providing more information about a particular product in your project, text hotspots can be extremely versatile. Being able to do so can help give clarity, and answer some of your client’s questions instantaneously. Additionally, with using text hotspots, you can draw your clients’ attention to an area especially if there have been changes made.


Image

It’s important to be able to have alternatives to a particular product, however, it could be quite disruptive to your VR presentation. Our image hotspots will be your fool-proof solution to this situation. By adding different image hotspots to a scene, you are now able to show alternative arrangements, colors, or materials to your clients. Or, offer a view in different lighting, an alternate furniture arrangement or a close up of materials. By doing so, you bypass needing to render multiple variations of the same scene if just one of the products were in question. Plus, you avoid the risk of breaking the immersive experience that VR brings by clicking in and out of variation options.


Color Customization

Being able to change the color of your hotspots is our newest feature release. It became apparent that this feature was needed, especially for those in A&D due to the current design trends. White has become the on-trend color, which was coincidentally the original color of our hotspots. Although certain projects may call for a hotspot to be blended into the background, others may need it to stand out. Now with the added ability to customize the color, you have the added capability and flexibility to make your VR project your own. And as always, you can adjust the size and depth of the hotspot to make it fit in your scene in both fishtank and headset experiences.


Custom Starting View

Here at Yulio, we value your suggestions on how we can be the most customizable experience possible. Good news — we listened and released our custom starting view feature to be used in conjunction with our forward gaze navigation. Previously, you would have needed to set the perfect camera angle where you wanted viewers to drop in before rendering the scene in your CAD program. Now, you can do it within your project! Set your default starting view by using our Hotspot editor and strategically select the most stunning part of your scene. By doing so, you ensure the first thing your client sees is your “money shot” view.



Explore Mode

As a part of our Collaborate feature, explore mode allows you to start your presentation with an auto pan of your VR scene, giving your clients time to explore your scene at their own pace.

 


This feature is very effective in settings where you may have limited space or time to present your vision. One such example is trade shows where there may be high volumes of traffic, but limited ability for you to interact with everyone. Having Yulio auto pan through your scenes keeps engagement on the screen while you’re busy with clients and ensures your VR project is being showcased ongoing. With explore mode, you will keep your visitors and clients engaged, allow them to establish a connection with your project, and give the opportunity to continue your conversation.

 

It’s safe to say 2018 was a big year for us, and we hope you enjoy all of Yulio’s feature releases. As we step into 2019, we will be releasing even more awesome features in our continual commitment to making Yulio the best VR presentation tool for business, so continue to watch this space.



If you want to try out any of our new features for yourself – we’ll give your first 30 days free! Sign up for your free Yulio account here for access to our full feature set! Want to stay updated with everything or anything Yulio? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin!
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Industry News, News and Updates, VR

There’s a reason why many people refer to December as being the most wonderful time of the year. With buildings decorated from head to toe in twinkle lights and ribbons, it’s truly a magical sight. As the years go by, how we experience this holiday season changes, and 2018 is no exception. Every year, businesses consistently incorporate the newest in technology, hoping to make this festive time better than the last.


From the architectural advancements of the huge Christmas displays inside malls to the recent popularity of blow-up lawn decorations, technology can make this holiday season even more festive. With companies mass adopting VR, it’s no surprise seeing releases related to this immersive adventure. We have picked out our top 3 VR holiday releases that are happening during this festive season, however, let’s take a trip down memory lane.


Past VR Christmas Releases

Every year, Brits all over the country gather around their screens in anticipation for a very special Christmas advert. John Lewis, one of the largest department stores in the world, is known to release a heart-warming short during the festive season encouraging everyone to get into the holiday spirit. 2016 was the start of one of their most innovative years ever. Their Oxford street store had a VR setup, allowing you to step into the shoes of an adorable dog named “Buster the Boxer”. The following year also welcomed yet another VR experience, with “Moz the Monster” pulling at everyone’s heartstrings. With the VR rigs set up in their stores, parents could take a break from holiday shopping to share a new experience with their family.


Now that we’ve had a chance to look back on some examples of using VR during this time of year, let’s dive into what we can expect this year!


For Everyone

As technology continues to advance, the more accessible these products are available. Oculus has made huge steps in making VR technology available to all people. Arguably, one of their biggest and most important releases were the Oculus Go headsets, transforming VR technology forever. These headsets were the first to provide a fully immersive experience without being strapped onto a rig. Stripping down the equipment to its essentials, the Go is not only now mobile, but extremely affordable. The Go is currently going for $325USD, which is almost $200 cheaper than the Oculus Rift. And guess what — this holiday season is about to get even better. Oculus has announced that this holiday season, their headsets are being discounted! This exclusive offer is available until December 30th on Oculus’s website, or through Amazon, Argos, John Lewis and more. Stock up on some awesome VR headsets this year!



For the Gamer

This holiday season will be huge for gamers. Square Enix is one of the biggest names in the gaming industry, with an estimated net worth of $1.26 billion. Some of their most well loved and notable games include Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Kingdom Hearts. A few months ago, Square Enix announced that they will be releasing the VR version of one of their most beloved and popular game, Kingdom Hearts. As of the 25th of December, the Kingdom Hearts VR Experience will launch in Japan, featuring their main story’s stages. They will have an updated release on the 18th of January releasing the remainder of their content giving their users all the stages to conquer.



For the Family

The holidays are a time for everyone to enjoy, and ImmotionVR has concocted a fun VR experience that is family-friendly.



In 10 locations all over the UK, experience what it’s like to be one of Santa’s elves with Elf Power Inc. this holiday season! Thanks to ImmotionVR, guests get to experience what it’s like as Santa’s elves in making Christmas a magical time. Step into Santa’s workshop and see with your own eyes what it’s like to pull off Christmas. For those eight and over, this fun-filled VR experience will definitely get you into the holiday mood.


VR and This Holiday Season

The December holiday season is one that many look forward to, and VR is popping up everywhere you look. Whether it be the deals you can score for last minute gifts, new releases to look forward to, or an experience fit for the whole family, VR is blending into how we experience this festive time. As this industry continues to grow and explore more ideas on how to make an experience more immersive, we can expect to see more of VR in the coming years.


Enjoy this merry season more immersed than ever!


Here at Yulio, we strive for excellence in performance and integrity when it comes to our product, and customer service. To learn more about how VR can enhance your business workflow, sign up for our FREE 5-day email course. Get in touch with us to schedule a training webinar for a full walkthrough of Yulio here.

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How to, News and Updates, VR
We’re pleased to announce an update to Hotspot options that many of our users have been asking for – the ability to change hotspot colors. In the Yulio Hotspot Editor, users may now choose between black or white hotspots each time they set one up in a scene.The need for choice in hotspot color became clear as many of our clients began expanding their use of hotspot types – whether they were linking to multiple scenes through navigation hotspots or enriching their scenes with audio files, placing the spot in the scene became key so the details weren’t overlooked.“We noticed in a lot of beautiful VR scenes that our original white hotspots were getting lost. With today’s design trends being filled with a lot of white ceilings, lighting fixtures and furniture in neutral palettes, Yulio clients needed a new option so that the hotspots weren’t overlooked” said Chris Bellefontaine, Yulio’s marketing director. “It’s a small feature, but one some of our clients were looking for, and we’re always eager to partner with them and help them design great visual experiences,” she added.You can adjust your hotspots in each scene using the existing hotspot properties menu, where you can still adjust the depth of the hotspot in the scene, and name the hotspot.Hotspots appear per your settings in both fishtank and headset modes and are the ideal way to guide your users through your design story while giving them additional information in context through audio or image additions right within the scene. Now with hotspot colors, designers are able to make their hotspots stand out or blend with the scene, depending on their goals, regardless of background images.  Hotspot color customization is now available to all Yulio clients.  To learn more visit our knowledge base, or to try it out for yourself, sign up for our free 30-day trial (no strings attached!).
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How to, News and Updates, VR
We’re happy to introduce new Explore mode as a part of Yulio’s Collaborate feature.
With Collaborate you have the ability to see what other people are seeing, guide them to a spotlighted area and have everyone meet in the same virtual space. Now with Explore Mode, you can start your presentation with an auto pan throughout a VR scene and let all participants explore the full VR project at their own pace.

Any headsets you have at your meeting or tradeshow booth will be in the Collaborate session, and participants can explore the scene, but not leave the project you have chosen to present. People you’re meeting with in-person will all be in the same session on headsets, and remote participants can join from anywhere, in a headset or our browser-based fishtank mode.

As a presenter, you can benefit from this new feature in many ways. One of the most effective use cases is engaging your visitors at the trade shows. Virtual reality has changed the entire trade show landscape by providing the opportunity to have an infinite floor space within the limited booth area. Bringing a VR experience to the booth attracts a higher volume of visitors and during peak times you don’t always have time to accommodate guided tours. But you won’t miss a moment if you can let booth visitors explore your scene on their own while you’re interacting with other clients.

Plus, you can always give your audience the chance to establish a deeper emotional connection by inspecting the area of their most interest in detail right after the presentation or tour.


How do I Launch Explore Mode?


Start out by launching a Collaborate Session. To launch Explore Mode, hit the Explore button at the top of the Participant Panel.
During explore mode, as the host of the Collaborate Session, your screen will pan throughout the selected scene. Don’t worry you can still interact with your screen at any time.


All other participants will have the ability to go off and explore the VR project you have selected for the Collaborate Session. They will be able to switch scenes and activate text/image/audio hotspots (if you have this ability turned on in Collaborate Settings).

To end explore mode and bring all participants back to the desired scene, click the Present button in the Participant Panel.

Some of the winning use cases from our user research:
  • Use Explore Mode to show off your VR portfolio in your lobby or office, with a constantly panning VR scene.
  • Trade show operation of VR is easier than ever, so visitors to your booth can play and explore a chosen VR project, even when you aren’t able to guide them.
  • Allow your clients to explore the VR scene on their own and form emotional attachment before or after your guided experience.


Allowing your meeting participants to explore on their own will let them become more fully engaged with the project, and you can take control to provide a guided tour at any time.

Explore mode is available immediately to all Yulio clients. To learn more visit our knowledge base.  Or to try it out for yourself, sign up for our free 30-day trial (no strings attached!).

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How to, News and Updates, VR
Part of our effort to make your experience working within Yulio the most customizable and intuitive experience possible, we’d like to introduce you to a brand new (highly requested!) feature and a new navigational concept!

The first item is a BRAND NEW FEATURE that we call, Default Starting View. You requested it and now here it is! Previously, to set the default view for a scene, you would have to adjust the camera angle before you render your scene in your CAD program; but now, you have the freedom to customize this right within your project! Set the custom picture-perfect angle for the starting position of your VR scenes right from the Hotspot editor, and view your entire project’s beauty shots by clicking on the arrows at the bottom left-hand corner of your experience. This feature is a part of our continuing effort to ensure that your VR projects are as stunning as possible. The ability to change the starting position of your VR scenes allows you to strategically show off the most beautiful aspects and angles of your scenes right when your user enters your project without the hassle of re-rendering your files.

First, we’ll show you how to set up your default starting views.

 

 

 

 


The next time you view your scene in browser mode or in VR, the new Default Starting Direction will be your opening scene.

Just be sure that you don’t select a view that is too disorienting to your viewer, or you may throw off the logical navigation of your scene! For more on navigation, see our Knowledge Base article on Default Starting View.


The second item is a new concept for how we’re positioned in our VR experiences. Forward Gaze Navigation is now the new dominant method for how we see within our VR scenes and navigate hotspots when you’re in VR. Forward Gaze Navigation is a more natural way of navigating your VR project – so no more getting turned around when you jump from hotspot to hotspot. Yulio now remembers which direction you were looking before you selected a new hotspot to jump to, and reflects that same direction in the new hotspot.

Currently, when you enter a Yulio scene, you enter facing whichever way the camera position was set. You’ll still enter into the set starting scene in projects with no floorplan, or if you use the ‘next scene’ arrows to navigate, so you have no changes to look at.

Since VR is a moving medium where your audience will explore in all directions, we recommend that instead, you set your camera positions facing due north.

If you do so, people exploring your scenes using hotspot navigation will always enter facing the way they will naturally expect, and you won’t need to calibrate your thumbnails and floorplan after the fact in Yulio.

However, if you’ve been taking advantage of our floorplan navigation feature, and have a project with a floorplan, you now have a way to orient the viewer in space.

To create a relationship between a floorplan, and a scene that was not rendered with due north cameras, all you have to do is calibrate the cone-shaped field of vision for each scene linked on your floorplan.
Cone-shaped field of vision
Log into your Yulio account and the select the VR project you would like to edit – remember you must have a floorplan and scenes to calibrate.

 

 

 

 

 

Remember – you only need to calibrate scenes you added to your floorplan, so if you have a link to something like “outside” or “upstairs” that aren’t on your floorplan, you won’t need to calibrate them.

To learn more and begin using Forward Gaze Navigation, visit our knowledge base.

Both Custom Starting View and Forward Gaze Navigation are available immediately for all Yulio clients to use. To find out more about using any of our features or for training, reach us at hello@yulio.com.

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AR, Architecture, Business, Design, How to, News and Updates, Technical, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

Adding to our collection of ways for you to enhance your VR projects, we’d like to introduce you to another version of hotspot annotations, image hotspots! This feature allows you to add a still image to your scene, while not interrupting your immersive experience for your audience.


Use image hotspots to show alternatives to a material, color or shape without having to render an additional scene, or get creative and show before/after shots and more. Image hotspots are another way to enhance your design, and tell your story in the context of the VR scene, without having to flip between VR and catalogs.


Check out an example of image hotspots in our showcase here.


 

 


 


This new feature is part of our continuing commitment to be the best VR presentation tool for business and can be viewed both in both browser-mode fishtank viewing with a button click and in VR by gazing at the hotspot. In Collaborate mode, hotspots are triggered by the presenter.


Some of the winning use cases from our user research:

  • In the context of your VR scene, show alternate arrangements, colors or uses and allow the viewer to easily look between them
  • By providing the image within the VR scene, you avoid breaking the storytelling experience – and let people see the work in context
  • Image hotspots will improve the range of things you can communicate in a single VR scene, save you ample time and space and allow you to easily expand on what is shown without having to fully render (a still image is much faster and cheaper)
  • Portfolio before and after transformations
  • Get creative and use an image to design a text annotation – maybe a quote from a designer


Image hotspots are available immediately to all Yulio clients. To learn more and begin using them, visit our knowledge base. Or to find out more about using any of our features or for training, reach us at hello@yulio.com.
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AR, Architecture, Business, Culture, Design, Industry News, News and Updates, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

Yulio Chief Product Officer Ian Hall recently attended VRX 2018 and brought back some key VR trends and winning patterns from the conference. While we’ve expanded on them a bit below, the overwhelming theme is that VR adoption is being led by business adoption and not consumers. As we’ve predicted, waiting for consumer VR headset sales is the wrong adoption indicator – and will leave you flat-footed when it comes to sharing your vision in VR.


VR Trends in Hardware

There have been a number of analyst predictions around headset adoption, which consistently indicated that beginning in 2018 and through 2020 standalone headsets like Oculus Go, HTC Vive Focus etc. will dominate over a console or premium mobile headsets like Samsung’s Gear VR. The Oculus Go has been a game changer in the area, removing much of the friction we’ve seen for our clients of awkwardly trying to put their phone inside a headset etc. Look for the Microsoft Hololens and continue innovation from Oculus to lead in this area, with shipments expected to double between now and 2020.







Yulio tip:

Like our Yulio Clients, Perkins+Will noted during their panel at the conference that Oculus Go is a slam dunk, and that their sales team love it. We bet they love it because it removes so much friction from installing an app on your phone, putting your phone in a headset etc. etc. You can get Oculus Go from any electronics retailer, or right from the Oculus store – download our Yulio app and you’ll be all set. Removing friction is the most important of the VR trends, as we’ve learned from our 1000+ hours of user testing.


VR Trends by Business Vertical

We’ve looked at a number of verticals using VR successfully, and we’ve always agreed with the comment made by Iffat Mai of Perkins + Will architecture -that “VR ROI (in architecture) is a no-brainer, our job is to sell you something that doesn’t exist”. But the opportunities in some other sectors are interesting too. Showrooms and Retail sectors are slightly ahead of A&D in terms of demand, with the major players all figuring out how to use digital reality to create meaningful retail experiences.

Beyond retail and architecture, experts see significant potential in Education and Healthcare – but both are challenging to services due to extensive regulation and barriers to changing the current process (whether rolling out a new curriculum in education or extensive health testing).

Likely the biggest ‘bet’ will be in the training field, with experiential learning, fewer physical meetings, and more self-guided learning all being keys to the value of VR.



Yulio tip:

Our clients who work in commercial furniture have found that early adoption of VR has allowed them to differentiate from their competitors by offering an immersive experience. Moreover, the experience helps people make faster decisions with a better sense of size and scale – and gives clients the tools they need to ‘sell’ upward in their organizations and achieve final sign off. Read more in our client showcase with HBI in Calgary.


 

VR Trends from Early Adopters

One of the most valuable elements from any conference is hearing and learning from those who have really set the virtual reality trends and are repeating useful patterns. You can leap-frog some learning by keeping key adoption learnings in mind:

  • If you’re responsible for rolling technology out to your sales or dealership/showroom teams, you need to look for something that’s as fail-proof as possible and operationalize the learning. Your benchmark should be that if it’s harder than powerpoint, or web-ex, you need a training webinar or session around resolving and scripting the issue
  • As the presenter, it can be challenging to manage the technology, tell your story, and ensure people don’t become isolated in VR. That’s why we recommend having no more than 2-3 headsets even in large presentations. If your software allows you to project what’s being seen in the headsets on a screen, you can see what people are looking at and create a social experience around it
  • The script is still critical to a VR supported presentation – VR trends in tech and even content don’t hide good design – so be sure you have the content, and the story you want to tell before immersing your clients in your scene


Yulio tip:

The most important VR trends aren’t about technology or complicated gadgets – they’re about storytelling. We recommend to all our clients who are looking to get started that they pick a target project – a pitch or presentation that’s upcoming, and use it as an area of focus to implement VR. One Oculus Go headset and a few software seats on Yulio will have you up and running for your presentation in no time. The key is to quit waiting for perfection….but rather to pick something simple and start your learning process.




Our advice? Don’t be alarmed. Fortunately, it’s not too late to get in on the VR game. It is, however, high time to get started. For the perfect way to get yourself up to speed on virtual reality trends, try our Yulio 5-day course and wow your colleagues with this pre-packed presentation full of our VR research on the state of the industry.

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Architecture, Business, Design, News and Updates, Technical, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

At Yulio, we’re always thinking about friction points you may have in your business for using VR. That’s why we are so excited to share our latest feature release with you – floor plan navigation – the easier way to explore large VR spaces!

Floorplan navigation integrates a traditional way of viewing designs, the 2D “dollhouse” view with VR for simpler navigation and presentation of VR projects.


The new feature lets you add a ‘dollhouse view’, ‘floorplan’ or exterior image to your project, and link your scenes to the appropriate spot on the floorplan. This allows you to more easily provide context and flow to your viewer, and organize complex projects with multiple hotspots. Tell your design story more easily by showing an overview of how the elements all fit together.


This new feature is part of our continuing commitment to be the best VR presentation tool for business and can be viewed both in browser mode or in VR headsets. It allows viewers to better understand how the different scenes in your project fit together and is a more flexible way of presenting a space. Rather than scrolling through each hotspot or photo in order, pop out to the floorplan view at any time to jump around the design. This flexibility allows you to have more fluid design presentations as you jump to areas of interest, and lets your clients explore links you send in the manner that most makes sense to them.



Floorplan navigation is available immediately to all Yulio clients. To learn more and begin using it, visit our knowledge base. Or to create a free, 30-day trial account and design your own project!

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Architecture, Business, Design, News and Updates, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

We’re excited to announce that Yulio technologies has launched its new website this morning.

The updated site includes changes to navigation, to make it easier for current users to find the tools they need to create stunning, simple VR design.


Our decision to refresh our website came from some big ideas about what Yulio is great at, and how to help our clients use the tool for simple VR design, and providing a home for our most important content so that people just beginning to investigate VR could take advantage of all that we’ve learned from our 1000+ hours of user testing in VR.

 

“A lot of our architecture and design clients came to VR with a sense that they needed to start thinking about how VR is changing their industry”, said Rob Kendal, Managing Director of Yulio. “But they were blocking themselves from getting started because the felt there was so much to consider about VR design, choosing the right tech and the right software. Yulio makes it so much simpler than that, and the new site reflects that commitment to simple VR design. We want to democratize VR, to help push its adoption in architecture and design forward, and to do that, we need to prove that it’s easy to get started”.


We’ve made some important style updates to simplify the process to get started using Yulio, added some great demo resources, and of course, the blog and other resources are still available, and only a single click away.

Simpler Navigation

Yulio’s new layout puts the features our clients use most at the forefront for easier day to day integration into their business. You can create, present share and analyze your VR experiences from the same interface and get internal collaboration with virtually no learning curve with the new intuitive layout and walkthrough guidance.

Better Access to Resources

Yulio’s new site feature a re-vamped blog, knowledge base, and direct access to our whitepapers and 5-day course. Accelerate your learning curve in VR with access to the resources we’ve built and discover how simple VR design can be. Plus, we’ve integrated live chat so our clients can reach out with questions and get support help right away.

Simple VR Design Trial

We’re now showing off the full magic of simple VR design in Yulio with a 30-day trial with full access to all of Yulio’s features. Free users can use navigation and audio hotspots to enhance their scenes, understand what’s drawing viewer attention with heatmaps. Free users can also take advantage of Collaborate, Yulio’s most popular feature, which allows you to share VR with clients in a presentation mode, either remotely or in-person. Use Collaborate to engage your clients in the next level of conversation by immersing them in your proposal – you’ll show off your use of VR and get to decisions and agreement faster. And you won’t believe how simple it is to create your first design.

 

We’ll be continuing to share our learnings on the blog in weekly posts and updating our showcase with new simple vr design inspirations. Follow our quest to bring simple VR design to every design firm and help them share their vision. And get started yourself with a full trial of all of our features for 30 days.

 

We hope you like the changes, and if you have any feedback, please let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin.

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Architecture, Business, Design, Industry News, News and Updates, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

We are so excited and so proud to announce that our app, the Yulio Viewer, is the first Business VR Viewer app to be released in the Oculus Go Store as of yesterday afternoon (May 9, 2018)!


The very much anticipated Oculus Go headset (OGO) hit the shelves on May 1st, and you better believe that we jumped at the opportunity to get our hands on it!


Not only is the OGO the first stand-alone headset to hit the market (ever!), but this is a HUGE step towards democratizing VR – in fact, this headsets launch is being sprouted as the first true consumer-focused VR system – and for good reasons. This headset is the best option on the market for anyone that wants to start exploring mobile VR without relying on your smartphone. There’s no phone required, no awkwardly fitting your phone inside the goggles and hoping it’s secure, no worrying about the headset draining your phone’s battery, no cables to entangle you. Just…..go. It’s that easy.



The release of this headset means that the barriers that were causing friction with mobile VR in the past – are virtually gone!


OGO embodies everything that Yulio has been built from the ground up to support, which is Fast VR. Having the ability to be mobile, simple, and affordable can transform how VR is used for your business. Fast VR is a principle, a habit, a way of bringing virtual reality into business situations and workflows at precise moments when it can do what it does best – quickly communicate the complex and without obstacles to get you there. This completely self-contained headset will make it easy for anyone to preload their designs, then simply pop in-and-out for a seamless, stunning and compelling virtual reality presentation.





Are you one of the first to get an Oculus Go headset? You can download our app in the Oculus Go Store to start exploring your stunning VR designs here. Our app is also available in the App Store, Google Play and Samsung’s Oculus Store for Cardboard and Gear VR. And if you haven’t already, hop on the train to experience Fast VR for yourself! Sign up for a free Yulio account to start impressing your clients.

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AR, Architecture, Business, Design, Industry News, News and Updates, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

If you follow the VR space at all, you’ve probably heard about Oculus Go VR – the much anticipated ‘all-in-one’ headset set to revolutionize mobile VR. No phone required, no awkwardly fitting your phone inside the goggles and hoping it’s secure, no cables to entangle you. Just…..go.


And that’s the intended magic of VR, isn’t it? Put on this headset and go anywhere. The Oculus Go is started being available to order  May 1 2018, (many of us at Yulio just bought one) so probably in our hands and hitting retailers soon for about  $200. That’s pretty exciting when you consider that a Gear VR from Samsung, the current best in class mobile experience is around $100 but requires a high-end smartphone to make the magic happen.


There have been plenty of articles discussing the consumer benefits but what about the benefits for those who can see immediate ROI? Let’s look at the four reasons why Oculus Go Virtual Reality is going to be the key to making your business a VR success.




You get the emotional connection of VR without all the hassle of preloading

VR’s power to forge emotional connections has always been why it is so interesting. The problem to date has been that it sometimes gets lost in cumbersome technology – what I would call ‘friction’. In the past several years of experimenting with VR technology, and more than 1000 hours of user testing, we’ve seen small things like an unwillingness to mess up hair and makeup with headsets, concern about looking foolish and concern about feeling nauseous all limit VR’s reach. And we’ve seen the current multi-step process –  download an app, put content on your phone, put the phone in a headset – impede business adoption.




The headset is powerful enough to stand on its own (and not draining your own phone battery)

The ‘smartphone as engine’ model has some inherent problems in current mobile VR that Oculus Go VR takes care of nicely. Right now, if your sales team is using VR in the field with their own phones, the experience can be interrupted by incoming calls or text alerts. And if their phone battery is at low because of this morning’s conference call, is an interior designer going to risk using it in VR at a client presentation? Standalone, purpose-built devices not only take away the friction of loading the right app and getting it going before placing it in a headset, but also take care of these small but very real inconveniences.




It makes fast VR, even faster –  and more personal

For VR to be a practical, everyday tool, I maintain that it has to be fast. It’s a tool to facilitate discussion, and I advocate a ‘pop in and out’ experience. Look inside the headset at a design problem or issue to be resolved with your client or prospect, and then have a discussion. Oculus Go is going to contribute to that ‘fast VR’ use case that I think is critical to business-ready VR. Simpler, pre-loaded VR experiences on the headset make the designer, marketer or even retailer the narrator of a story, and not someone facilitating technology like phones and apps. It helps you get into VR faster, and I’ve seen, many times, how transformative that is. It’s the difference between seeing something and being immersed inside it.



You don’t need to blow the rest of your pay cheque on the device that powers your headset

Another obstacle to business VR is perceived cost. You’ll see articles all the time explaining that the Gear VR or the Google Daydream is just $100. But they need phones which are $550+ to power them. As a business owner trying to arm salespeople with VR portfolios or installing these devices in retail environments, there’s a lot of risk for breakage, damage, and loss. But with Oculus GO virtual reality, marketers and sales manager will be able to get 3-4 devices for the same budget.


Get Started with Oculus Go VR

It’s a cornerstone of our approach to VR for business that the technology should never be a burden to a business user. You should be able to use the tools and processes you’re already using to bring your story into the VR medium. Oculus GO VR is another step toward making that seamless and has the potential to propel VR storytelling for business in late 2018.





Interested in learning about virtual reality? Sign up for our FREE 5-day email course, or sign up for a free Yulio account and take part in our free bi-weekly training webinars where we can walk you through getting started with your account to set you up for success!

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AR, Architecture, Business, Industry News, News and Updates, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality

If you’re feeling skeptical about whether or not 2018 is going to be the year of VR, you come by that skepticism honestly. VR has been plagued with over-hype, both from the press and headset makers. But, over the last 18 months, VR has ridden the hype cycle and we believe, come out the other side. Yulio clients have integrated VR into their practices and are on their way to it being an indispensable tool.


VR may not change your life yet – but it will change your business.


If you are still thinking VR is a transient fad and you can wait for it to pass…start thinking about it as a compelling technology that’s found it’s perfect time to shine. To help you get your head around the possibilities, here are a few stats we’ve rounded up from recent VR research we think you should see.



5 Years

Although in some form or other, VR has existed for several decades, the current boom in the technology was spawned by the Kickstarter campaign initiated just 5 short years ago by a little-known startup Oculus Rift. Oculus only ever sold (via Kickstarter) headsets as developer kits, but it still shifted 100,000.

A $2 billion acquisition later, and VR found its mojo, winning an ever-growing number of hearts, minds and new users across the globe.



11 Million+

Approximately 11 million virtual reality headsets were shipped in 2016, increasing to over 13 million in 2017.



51%

Over half of the U.S. population is aware of virtual reality devices and 22.4 million Americans are already VR users.



171 Million

Globally, right now, as I write, there are an estimated 171 million VR users.



$12.1 Billion

According to Statista, this very year, the virtual reality market is estimated to reach a value of 12.1 billion U.S. dollars. You think that’s a large number? You should see the next one.



$40.4 Billion

The projected VR software and hardware market is expected to reach $40.4 billion by 2020. That’s a lot of people using a lot of VR technology for a lot of different applications. By ‘a lot’, I mean …



1 Billion +

… Over one billion people will regularly access VR and AR content by 2020.
Yes, that’s a ‘billion’ people. IDC predicted last year that the compelling combination of virtual reality and augmented reality content will have a global audience that tops this crazy number by the turn of the next decade. Mental note – this must mean VR is no fad.



41%

Those still on the fence don’t plan to be for long. According to Google’s Consumer Survey conducted last year, more than a third of the adults said that they would give virtual reality a try if they had the chance to. Consumer interest is set to continue pursuing VR as one of the most emerging technologies.



44%

Who will make up the next wave of buyers? Millennials … and lots of them. According to Nielson, 44 percent of people interested in purchasing VR devices are between the ages of 18 and 34. This generation is one heavily motivated by innovative devices and will play a major role in defining what ‘sticks’.



250

To satiate that desire to get involved in VR, there are currently 250 VR headsets styles available for purchase on Amazon.com.



82 million

By all accounts, they’re selling well as, according to Statistic Brain, there are expected to be 82 million headsets in use by 2020.



90%

Of all those headsets sold worldwide, approximately 90% are mobile phone based. What does this tell you? Best to make all of your VR applications and content very mobile friendly.



So what can be garnered from all the big numbers in our virtual reality research? VR is here to stay. It might not have always mirrored the hype, but it is unquestionably a growing force to be reckoned with.


Our advice? Don’t be alarmed. Fortunately, it’s not too late to get in on the VR game. It is, however, high time to get started. To try VR for yourself, sign up for our 30-day free trial and wow your colleagues with this pre-packed presentation full of our VR research on the state of the industry.


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Business, News and Updates, Technical, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality
Top 7 Insights from Over 1000 Hours of VR User Testing
Looking for someone who has decades of experience in VR learning? Pretty tough to find. When it comes to VR, Yulio’s very own Chief Product Officer, Ian Hall is pretty much as good as it gets. Not that you’d hear that from him. Ian has been working in the visualization space since 1994. Over 20 years. A lifetime in technology. Back then, in the original, early 90s introduction of VR it consisted of gigantic, neck numbing headsets which offered very little in the way of movement but plenty in the way of nausea. It has come a long way since those early ventures and Ian has been there throughout. He and other members of his team at Yulio have logged more than 1000 hours of user testing and VR learning, working with subjects from ages 2 to 86 as they took their first steps and then journeyed into the immersive world of VR. As you’d expect, there have been a lot of insights gained along the way.Here are some of the best which may just help you deliver an incredible VR experience first time around;
Our #1 VR Learning: Say no to headstraps
This sounds silly, we know. But it’s a fact that people are sensitive about how they look. Many people become uncomfortable and self-conscious if asked to strap on a headset that risks messing up their hair and/or makeup – especially in a business environment. After seeing a large number of test subjects, including men and women of all ages, be reluctant to look at a VR experience, we knew it was causing a barrier to VR enjoyment and adoption. Ian personally cut the head straps off all of our VR sets in the Yulio lab and they’ve never been seen since. When using VR, you want to avoid any barriers that might get in the way of people fully engaging with an experience and one way to do that is by keeping them looking sharp. It sounds simple, but it came up over and over again throughout our VR learning hours – so save yourself some trouble and get rid of those straps.Pop in and outSeveral of our clients have reported that while their end clients were anxious to use VR to better understand a design, they wanted to use it as a jumping off point for conversation and engagement – not spend a lot of time exploring the VR scene in isolation. This has been borne out in our labs, and during our many VR collaborate sessions (Collaborate is a Yulio feature that lets users join and view a VR scene together – think webex for VR). Users typically spend about 40 seconds looking at a scene before their natural inclination is to lower the headset and discuss. And they almost always start looking into the center of the design, then glance up, and to the right. So you can anticipate what they’ll be discussing first.For many people using VR in a business setting, it’s a new and unfamiliar experience. It can cause some anxiety with users being wary of feeling foolish, nauseous or feeling blindfolded by the VR headset. The simple, yet ultra-effective solution to this is creating a ‘Fast VR’ experience whereby users can simply raise the headset to glance inside, then put it down and talk about what they saw. The user maintains control and is able to dwell on the experience for as long as they feel comfortable with. And it’s yet another reason we believe headstraps are the enemy of Fast VR.
Mobile is the way to practical VR
Don’t get us wrong, tethered headsets are incredible. Yulio has several in its lab and most Yulio employees spend some time in one every week to live out their VR dreams. They deliver an unmatchable immersive experience that can seriously blur the line between real and virtual. For business, however, they just aren’t that practical. The clue is in the title. Tethered rigs limit use to in-office and we’ve heard from countless A&D professionals that more than 80% of their designer-client interactions happen elsewhere. While the novelty of complex tethered headsets might wow clients in the short term, delivering VR through mobile means it can be set up in seconds and used anywhere, at any time.
Make it social
Immersed shouldn’t mean isolated. Providing social connectors can help people feel far more comfortable in a VR experience and know they aren’t doing something silly or embarrassing. Broadcast what the user is seeing on a monitor so that it attracts attention to the experience and gets everyone involved. By doing this, the user is able to lead a wider experience and gain validation and assurance from those around them. And, when no one is actively using the VR experience, you can still be showcasing a series of images.
 Have an alternative
For as many headsets as Ian and the Yulio team have owned and experimented with, they realize they aren’t yet in every home and every office. Because of this, it makes sense that all VR experiences should be accessible without them. Yulio VREs are all viewable via a web-based FishTank Mode meaning everyone can turn on any device and see what all the fuss is about. Although you lose some sense of scale and space vs. viewing a stereoscopic image in a VR headset, a browser-based viewer lets extremely motion sensitive or remote viewers view a scene in an approximation of VR. And for the record – most fishtank viewers (83%) start by dragging the scene up, and to the right.
Where to use it? Everywhere.
VR is a compelling combination of novel, practical and cool and those most successfully leveraging the technology are making the most of this unique feature set. It draws interest and excitement from people who have heard of the technology but never used it – and at this point in time, there are still many of those. We don’t expect it to last – an increasing number of companies are writing VR presentations into their A&D RFPs. But for now, be ready to show off with a  portfolio in your pocket. Storing A&D portfolios on a mobile device and carrying lightweight Homido glasses means design work can be shown off at any moment. By planning ahead we’ve seen realtors able to virtually transform empty blank space giving clients an on-the-spot virtual sample of what they could eventually create. By letting those same clients walk away with realtor branded viewing goggles and the experience uploaded to their phone, designer profiles can be raised and reputations cemented.
Get creative and experiment
Our mission at Yulio has always been to create great, practical tools and then get out of the way to let users get creative. We see their VR learning improve exponentially when we do. It’s worked out well. Through giving designers and marketers the tool to flex their muscles, we’ve seen some great ways that design and brand stories can be told. The medium is young, and the winners are those taking chances through experimentation and trying ever more engaging ways to tell a great story. Use these learnings to ensure your story gets told without barriers like head straps, or negative experiences like a feeling of isolation get in the way of that story.For much more detail on all we’ve learned in our virtual adventures, sign up for Yulio’s free 5-day course on Business VR. Give us 10 minutes a day and you’ll be on your way to VR expertise….you can skip 999 hours or so.
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Business, Design, How to, News and Updates, Technical, VR, Your Business + Virtual Reality
For over 30 years, award-winning design studio, Graven, has been helping to build some of the world’s biggest brands. Over the last 12 months, they’ve been using ‘Small VR’ (low-cost mobile-based VR with simple viewers such as Google Cardboard, etc) to help them do it better than ever. We talked with Company Director Ross Hunter (RH) and BIM Coordinator Stephen Thomas (ST) about the Company’s move into virtual reality and the impact they’ve seen from the integration of Small VR in key areas of their design and build processes.

How did you first come across VR?
ST –  It was through some work we did with another firm (Soluis) which had invested in very high-end visualization technology (Oculus), that we saw the potential of how immersive visualization could help the communication of design. What we were specifically looking for at Graven was a way to work more closely with our clients and give them the advantages of working in three dimensions. We wanted something with a very low barrier to entry, something that we could integrate into our everyday conversations with clients and that would help inform the design process. That’s when we started to talk about small VR. Having our designers working and thinking about designing in 3D is different than the processes we were using before. Once we started using BIM and then VR, it made total sense to keep everything in that 3D environment and use that to structure our thinking internally as well as our conversations with clients.

How is Small VR actually used at Graven?
RH – We now use VR within several stages of a project from sharing and collaborating on ideas in-house to presenting ideas to clients and also for clarifying with contractors exactly what they need to build.


 

 

Using headsets works really well when people are remote and can experience a design from wherever they are. During larger, in-person meetings, we tend to put VR designs onto an iPad or on a big screen. That enables us to navigate quickly around environments and for everyone to view the same thing. It doesn’t rely on having 10 people sitting together with goggles up to their faces which might be a little weird. It’s also been of huge benefit to contractors as they can understand exactly what they’re building without the need to take entire teams through hundreds of drawings. We’re not just giving them technical specifications but showing them the intent, what the finished product is meant to look like. They can ask us questions and clarify anything they need to and there’s far less opportunity for confusion down the line.

Have you seen an ROI from your use of VR?
RH – It can be hard just trying to keep a track of how much time we spend on each project so finding clear metrics around ROI is difficult. Anecdotally, there are many benefits. We tend to get hurt most often on the back end of a project, past the design and development stage into the technical design stage. Even when you’ve done your utmost to ensure everything is signed off and clients are happy, with the best will in the world, it doesn’t always happen like that. The further down the line a change needs to happen, the more expensive that is.

ST – People find it very hard to understand drawings and everybody’s been in situations where they walk into a building once it’s finished and it doesn’t look like they imagined – the ceiling’s a little lower than they thought, the view is slightly different. VR helps prove sight lines and a sequence of spaces. It’s absolutely the best way to do it. It cuts down on bad communication and gives clients a greater opportunity to understand the impact of a design proposal. Everyone wants to know what it’s going to look like from where they sit and being able to offer them that at an early stage through VR is incredibly useful. With less changes needed on the back end, the overall time spent is reduced and we can spend more time on the ‘clever stuff’. We see VR actually making architects better value by the fact that they can spend more time on areas that add value to a client rather than on low-value stuff like going back to fix issues late in the process.

Did you look into BIG VR as an option for Graven?
RH – We didn’t. Firms that have invested heavily in visualization tech can obviously support the creation of full, immersive environments at a very high level. For us, that’s not sensible. Graven offers its clients a great deal of expertise in the front end i.e. design and development, strategic direction, etc. What we, therefore, need most are tools that help us excel in those first few, key stages of the process. Small VR is certainly what supports us best in that mission.

Is VR changing the way your designers work?
RH – It certainly helps us get the best out of the minds of our creative teams and allows this to be clearly fed into the minds of our clients. In terms of conceptualizing a new environment in three dimensions, good designers will already be doing this. What VR does is it helps them get it out of their head and effectively communicate it to the person who’s going to pay for it or going to build it.

What has been the client response to VR? Is it a differentiator for the firm?
RH – What was surprising was that when we started to hand clients a simple Google cardboard viewer and ask them to look at even a basic visualization in three dimensions, it had a massive impact. People are amazed and it’s surprising that more people aren’t doing it. For us, it’s very quickly become a key part of our process. Within our company culture, we expect our designers to think of this just like they would taking a pencil out and drawing a sketch. It’s fully integrated, not an add-on or something we only bring in at the end. It’s not a marketing or sales gimmick either. It doesn’t cost us anything extra to build that into our process. It doesn’t cost the client anything extra to have a 3D VR model created. It’s incredibly simple and that’s why we like it so much. I think there’s going to be a big change in the next couple of years and ultimately everyone will work like this. It’s a game changer.


Try Small VR Yourself:
Special thanks to Graven images for chatting with Yulio this week. Check out their legendary designs at https://graven.co.uk/. We love sharing ideas about how to translate design vision into VR, bringing greater understanding to clients. Trying small VR for your firm can bring you ROI and improve your image as a technology leader. And you can have your first VR designs in minutes. Sign up for your free Yulio account today and discover how transformative and practical small VR can be.
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News and Updates, Uncategorized

Brighton Community Development, Saskatoon

Yulio is proud to be the official Virtual Reality (VR) technology providers for Brighton, a new community development launched in Saskatoon on Saturday, September 10, 2016.The highlight of the launch was the opening of the 4,800 square-foot Information Centre, which invites community members and potential buyers to experience the finished development in Virtual Reality.This is the first use of VR as a tool for public real estate visualization at such large scale: over 800 acres of undeveloped public space are currently being showcased through the Information Centre’s VR displays.yulio_virtual_reality_architecture

Industry Leaders Work Together

The Information Centre is the result of the combined efforts of Dream, the largest commercial real estate development company in Canada, and Norm Li, Toronto’s most prestigious architectural visualization studio. As the industry’s leading VR platform, Yulio was the logical choice as the best technology to display the Brighton community to the public.

The Time is Right for Virtual Reality

The impressive installation confirms what many are saying about Virtual Reality in the architecture, real estate and construction industries: that Virtual Reality is next logical medium for design and visualization. Much like the CAD and BIM revolutions of recent decades, VR is giving architects, designers and construction engineers an even greater ability to create, visualize and problem-solve prior to construction.Hype and buzz aside, serious adoption of VR technology is still limited to the industry’s forward-thinking technological innovators. Yet those early adopters who are actively experimenting with the technology are reaping serious rewards.

Coming Soon: New VR Capabilities for Yulio Users

The installation also debuts Yulio’s new Kiosk capability, a display-driven feature that combines live video streaming with a responsive interface that transforms the display into a rolling panorama when the headsets are inactive. The new feature has certainly made an impact; according to Brad Zurevinski, general manager of Dream Development in Saskatoon, “Visitors can put on the virtual reality goggles and step outside to get a 360-degree view of what future areas of Brighton will look like upon completion. A large screen TV will also provide a view of what the person is looking at through the virtual reality goggles.” Live-streaming capabilities like that featured in Yulio’s Kiosk mode make VR technology even more impactful for viewers by transforming a typically solitary experience (viewing VR in individual headsets) into a collaborative, presentation-based medium ideal for community-focused projects like the Brighton development.Yulio’s Kiosk feature is set to be released to users later in the year.  Interested in getting VR technology into your business? Find out more at www.yulio.com or email hello@yulio.com to book a live demonstration of Yulio. 
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Everything Else, News and Updates, Your Business + Virtual Reality
We’ve got something exciting to announce: you can now view 360 photos in Yulio! If you’re a Yulio user, check out our Knowledge Base article for more technical information and a guide on using the feature. Why should you use 360 photos? In the same way that a 2D image of an architectural rendering is nothing like experiencing that same rendering in Virtual Reality, viewing a 360 photograph is an entirely new experience: it’s captivating, fully immersive, and communicates better than anything how it really feels to be in a space. Your only competitor? Brick and mortar. Our clients use Yulio’s 360 photo capabilities in a number of ways:
  • Showcasing before and after photos in portfolios
  • Showcasing before photos with ‘after’ renderings
  • Presenting spaces off-site, without the need to for either party to travel
It’s early days, but 360 photography–and the entire Virtual Reality industry–is proving itself to be incredibly valuable for the A&D community (and their clients!). Ready to give it a go? Sign up for a free 30-day trial of Yulio’s Virtual Reality software today.
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