“Matterport cameras create the mesh for their spaces by firing out invisible beams of infra red light. The resulting measurements are captured and during processing, which usually takes anywhere between 4 and 24 hours depending of the size of the space, these measurements create the 3D model that the 360 panoramic images are hung on.”
This is the line I find myself reciting to our clients many times as I go about ‘my work’. ‘My work’ consists of relentlessly tapping my shoulder-slung iPad, hiding behind walls then moving the camera 6 feet or so before more hiding, telling people to ‘stop’ where they are and walking round in circles behind the camera. I often think that to the casual observer, my moves could be likened to a weird kind of honey bee’s waggle dance and are, I imagine, a source of amusement for staff on their CCTV system.
A scorching June definitely made outdoor scanning very difficult as the sun’s infra red light rays made short work of blinding the camera and making alignment even in doorways and vestibules problematic. Nevertheless we scanned a beautiful Edwardian semi-detached house for our estate agent client in Wigan at the start of the month, which looked stunning in the summer sun. By the end of the month analytics showed us that the virtual tour had almost 400 unique viewers even before the month was out. These stats were propped up by the fact the house had sold within the first few weeks, evidence indeed that Matterport ‘open house’ viewings that are accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week are extremely effective, even for houses at the lower end of the property market. This property sold at a shade under £190,000; historically most of our scans have been for houses above the half a million pound mark. This has definitely given Joel the sales director food for thought going forward.
Networking has been a buzzword again this month as I find myself into the second month proper of spreading the word about virtual tours as a marketing tool around such forums. One such meeting led to us producing a tour for a fantastic start up company - Ele. The guys at Ele (which stands for Extreme Low Energy) are using ethernet cables and switches to create an alternative to a ring main that utilises DC power at 45V instead of the standard AC current at 240V. I love this creative thinking common amongst most entrepreneurs. Mark the director really is bringing the possibility of using renewable energy sources and ‘off grid’ living one step closer to the masses. We created a tour for him of his show house which showcases his award winning technology; a company that is really going places I’m sure. Mark told me that he had used the tour we created for him to great effect at two events at which he was exhibiting. The tour basically brought the low power show home to the exhibition and communicated the concepts so much more clearly to interested visitors to his stand. A win again for virtual tours for sure: the ability to ‘be there’ when you are somewhere else has so much potential in so many sectors.
Another sector we are looking at getting involved in is construction, mainly in the documentation of ‘as built’ evidence which can form part of the final package when a build or remodel is handed over. The benefits of this technology in capturing building milestones such as completed steel work, first fix electrics and plumbing and other services can make completing subsequent work quicker, safer and more accurate and therefore cheaper. Speaking to people in the trades as I have, the response to the possibility of using my imaging technology for these purposes has been overwhelmingly positive, so watch this space.
Nettl of Liverpool’s graphic design studio was the subject of one of our tours, showcasing their printed products and banners as well as their portfolio and other services. Another of their services is web design. Their tour is set to feature on their new website and as a example to show its amazing potential to their clients. Peter and Emma at Nettl quickly recognised the potential of the rich content and improved dwell time that a virtual tour provides for websites, and are keen to offer the service through Convirt3D when applicable. Another example of how networking really works business to business. I look forward to working with them in the future.
So as a busy June comes to a close, this is just half of the story. Our sister company iCADworx is in the middle of a large rendering project which consists of creating 60+ CGI images of furniture which will be used to launch a whole new product range.
Can’t wait to see what July brings. Probably more walking round in circles behind a Pro2 camera and avoiding mirrors no doubt.