We got our hands on Matterport technology in preparation for a client pitch (we are using it to show how we would integrate custom hardware and software solutions into an in store experience) and figured, why not scan our own office as well. This is a great way to showcase our unique office space to the public in the most advanced way.
Just a couple years ago, this fully automated system wouldn’t have been anywhere near this fast, or affordable. Any person, through Matterport, can easily virtualize an environment through automated, high-quality panoramic captures. Once the panoramas are stitched together in Matterport's platform, users are able to explore a virtual environment in a web browser, mobile device, or even VR.
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Real-estate is an industry that would reap direct rewards from the scans through listing wins- anyone wanting to give a virtual tour of a home, commercial property, office building or complex, or renters apartments could utilize the 360 degrees of the space, rather than viewing only pre-selected shots of an environment. Travel and hospitality can also benefit- by showcasing a matterport scan of a cabin or hotel, museum, or even state park would capture a teaser for what to expect, or more importantly, why they should visit.
Architects and engineers now have the opportunity to render dimensions in a very-large 3D map environment down to a few centimeters. This allows an understanding of the possibilities within a space, without having to spend time and money on a team to produce measurements. With the matterport, you can quickly scan an environment and know both its limitations and its possibilities from a documentation perspective. It makes recording, documenting, and sharing an environment much easier than practices in the past.
Here are 7 tips that’ll help you get the perfect scan:
- Clean Don’t Sanitize- Make sure the your environment is free of any mess or clutter, but don’t sanitize the space so that there is no character left.
- Consider Sensitive Data- Make sure before you scan, you clear whiteboards, computer screens or desks of anything that is considered sensitive information or not for the public eye.
- Plan What You Want to Showcase: For example, if you’re scanning a home, you may want to have the fireplace going or snacks set out to make the space more inviting. While if you’re scanning an office space or business, you may want to showcase your client journey map or a particular team in action.
- Plant Easter Eggs- Place “easter eggs” around your environment to encourage users to wander through the 3D space. For example, we planted a Robin Autopilot mower, the drone we used for UberEats, and if you look close enough, you may be able to find a T-Rex coding.
- Remain Still When Scanning All Sides - If you chose to have people in your scans to enhance the experience, it’s important that they remain in the same spot while in view of the Matterport camera. If an object moves during the 30-second duration of each session, you risk having to redo that particular scan. It’s also important to scan people on all sides, so they are present in every shot. Ask for volunteers ahead of time, and let them know what they are about to get into so there are no surprises when it comes time to scan.
- Get Your Spacing & Time Right- Although each individual 360 degree scan takes just 30 seconds, they add up in a large space. Each scan should be placed about 5-8 feet from the last. To do one level at Dialexa, it took about 3 hours to capture the perfect representation of our space. Plan a day around it, this isn’t something you can just squeeze in, especially in an active office environment.
- Utilize Tags to Provide Context- Once you’ve uploaded your 3D scans, you have the option to embed hyperlinks into the finished product. Utilize these. We are tagging team members in our office along with certain easter eggs.
As a Technology Research, Design, & Creation Firm, we can have a difficult time trying to convey our vision, culture and workplace to our clients, potential clients, potential employees - this scan helps communicate this in some form for those that cannot visit in person. For our client work or for pitches, it is very powerful giving someone back their own environment with our own imagery printed on top of it - it’s the next level of sales design language. It’s surprising what kind of creativity that can conspire, being able to go back again to review a proposed solution in the context of a client's physical environment. This is something that could never be done previously with just standard notes over a space.
Matterport allows for a buffer between “a great idea” and the reality to what is possible in a space - not something we would have been able to do without having this virtualized environment as a test bed.