Written and compiled by our Head of Social Media in Cape Town, Madré Roothman.
On Thursday, 14 April, SDK Digital Lab popped over to the Saatchi & Saatchi Synergize Amphitheatre to give a demonstration on 360 videos, virtual and augmented reality. We were pretty stoked as SDK Lab is the first South African agency to be working with, and developing for, the Oculus Rift and other Virtual Reality devices. They are also Africa’s leader in Augmented Reality, Eye/Facial tracking, Facial Recognition and Virtual Reality. So what exactly are 360 videos, virtual and augmented reality? And how can this benefit your clients?
So let’s start with 360 videos. Man, I love these babies. Anne Hirsch – my fave – was the first South African talk show to do one of these. And who better to do it with than SDK Lab? 360 Videos is an amazing feature that can help with user engagement. But don’t use it as a gimmick or simply because it looks cool. If it benefits your brand – go for it. Like Anne Hirsch showing her fans a 360 video of “A day in the life of The Anne Hirsch Show”. In the video, she shows fans how her studio is set up with lights, props and gives them a depth of field for the space she shoots in. Nice one, Anne.
You can also use 360 videos if your business is into real estate, travel or sports. This real-estate video makes me go all ga-ga for what the future holds when I buy my first house. Wake up, South Africa.
Augmented reality, on the other hand, can be cool for brands that want to enrich a user’s real world. They do this by placing 3D rendered models and videos as overlays into a user’s real-time reality. How? Accessing a camera view on any kind of device does this, and then placing a 3D rendered model as an overlay into the view of what a user will see through the camera lens. Think here of the Plascon Inspire Me application. It identifies Plascon paint colours on objects you take photos of, and gives you the option to then view adjacent and complementary colours. Pretty cool for when you’re doing home DIY. Or if you’re a gamer.
But gamers tend to go more for the Virtual Reality option. This is when users immerse themselves into a multimedia or computer-simulated reality, usually by wearing a ridiculous looking headset. Like the ones we wore with the SDK Labs demonstration. It does, however, extend itself far beyond a gamer-only experience. Think Google Cardboard for brands. McDonald’s Sweden did a brilliant job in reinventing the Happy Meal with its introduction of the happy box. A virtual reality headset made from Happy Meal packaging. Think kids getting more excited over happy meals. Think more brand awareness for McDonald’s. Then there’s the example of Volvo who did the first virtual reality test drive – also with virtual reality. It gave potential customers a chance to virtually test drive and experience the Volvo XC90 SUV if they downloaded the app , and had the headset.
All in all – we’re excited about the implemenatation of new tech and strategies with our clients. So check back to this space soon. Who knows – it could be your brand.
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