User-Generated Content is the Holy Grail of Augmented Reality
While content creation is only available to designers, artists and other professionals, AR will not go mainstream.
If you analyse when each media platform reached massive success, you will find a common denominator: user-generated content. When users have the power to create content, adoption grows exponentially. When this happens, platforms become mainstream and impactful and have the potential to change the way we communicate.
Experts and all big-tech companies agree Augmented Reality is the next relevant platform… but is there an easy way its users can create their own content?
Unfortunately, the answer is no.
Creating content for AR is still fairly complicated. Given the 3D nature of the real world, AR content also needs to be 3D, so it goes without saying the content creation tools should run on 3D environments too. Unity and Unreal took a brave step and became the default platforms for professionals and prosumers to create content for AR, convincing thousands of game developers to give this new medium a try. Snap and Facebook, through their AR lenses and AR effects respectively, popularised a way to enjoy AR content directly on their users’ faces, and seeing their massive potential, they created tools to simplify the creation and publication of these filters, through desktop software that can be learned easily. But… is this enough to satisfy all the content demand for AR?
Again, the answer is no.
First, because you still need to download their desktop software, learn using their tutorials, and only then get creative. Second, because one of the main limitations these tools have is that most of the content in AR is synthetic, especially the only content available users can create, personalised avatars, which even though they are fun and playful, are almost always cartoonish. It’s like if you turned on Netflix and you could only watch animated movies.
Volu, the first app that allows users to capture people in AR
Volograms mission is bringing reality capture closer to everyone and this week we announced a new product we had in the making: Volu. Volu is a new app that allows you to capture people in 3D, play with the models with 3D special effects we call “superpowers,” and create content directly in AR.
With Volu, you can capture a friend as if you were recording a normal video. The captured footage is processed using our deep learning algorithms and you can experience the resulting vologram directly in AR, create new content with it and share it on your preferred social network. Furthermore, you can play with the built-in superpowers and create amazing content you can’t create with any other app. Volu unlocks user-generated content for AR, content based on the real world, content that is human.
Volu is the result of more than a year of hard work at Volograms, where after three years creating volumetric video content for professionals, we decided to go back to where we started, and build something that works on the phone, and which enables AR content creation to virtually everyone. Volu is the first app that allows you to capture volumetric video content with a single smartphone. No need to go to a massive studio with dozens of cameras.
Volu will be available to beta-test in the coming weeks and we are looking for creators to be our firsts testers. If you are interested, join our waitlist!
Stay tuned for more! 😎