shoutr labs CEO Sebastian Winkler – How much does a XR project cost?

Smart Glasses

Long story short

Investing in AR is possible today and you should do it now – otherwise you will pay a lot more in the future. So better start investing today. Starting from only 1.000 €!

You Need to Keep Up!

Let me start with a prediction:

if you don’t start investing now, it will become extremely expensive for you in the future because you missed making the necessary experiences.

Worlwide Enterprise AR graphic

Virtual and Augmented Reality is becoming a really big thing and more and more companies are using it for their research & design process, marketing purposes, training scenarios and entertainment. Basically, it benefits every part of the value chain:

Value Chain graphic

Almost every day, we at shoutr labs are approached by companies to deliver immersive Augmented- and Mixed Reality – spatial computing – applications.

If you want to learn more about us go to www.shoutrlabs.com. In order to deep-dive into the history of those technologies, see this wrap-up.

But why XR technology?

If you ask people whose only purpose is to predict the future, they will tell you: ask those people who have the power to make the future. If you take just one look into technology, you will stumble upon the mayor players: Facebook, Apple, Google and Microsoft.

Since 2007 and the introduction of the first iPhone, AR will become the next big thing and it will become even bigger than smartphones or even the Internet.

Quotes about AR

In the following paragraphs, I’ll focus on Augmented and Mixed-Reality approaches that we employed at shoutr labs because we understood early-on that this is where the future was headed. We started to focus on it early and according to the latest market trends, we made the right choice.

In 2019, AR expenditure will for the first time become larger than VR.

Enterprise XR Spending graphic

I personally disfavour VR, because using it, you are stuck in your own virtual world whereas when using AR and MR, you can interact with others in the real world and let others participate in what you are currently experiencing. Take a look at the big social media platforms – people want to share their experiences because the value of an experience is measured by views and likes.

The Cost

Most clients don’t have an idea of how much this may cost.

First of all, big leaps in technology make it more affordable than ever. As always in technology and software development, we use the knowledge, research and development we do for one client to later make solutions even more affordable for upcoming customers. Currently, we do have a four-year runway of AR-experience, over which we’ve gained significant insight into tools, targets, devices, what is possible and where it makes sense to focus energy and money.

This all varies based on how much you can initially provide. Let’s imagine you are a car manufacturer and your R&D and Design department already has all your cars available as 3D models. Unfortunately, you face the fact that those models won’t display smoothly on a mobile device. They are optimized for high-end computers that have the power to render those models. So for mobile, you need to convert them into low-poly models. That may end up costly. Sometimes it would even make more sense to rebuild those models from scratch. So the 3D models, their animations, scripts, the level of quality, (non-)existing storyboards should all be taken into consideration.

And don’t forget about the time for realization: Specific projects and their costs can be derived from the time and resources needed to build it. And all custom experiences built from scratch require a team to do so.

The What-Is-Possible Workshop (starting from 2.000€)

Most of the time, a client already understands that they need to do something and do it quickly, but don’t really know where and how to start. In this case,we offer a workshop with various experts from shoutr labs on-site or at our office.

First we’ll present the current state-of-the-art of these technologies, the terminology and the best practises before we discuss things like storyboards, the business model and the question of how our client can save or make money using these technologies.

Usually, a lot of details emerge such as questions of whether to use BYOD or loaner devices, the way of streaming and hosting the data, using an app or not, licenses, localisation and such. After several days we then present a detailed result which helps the client to understand a) the state of the technology, b) their needs aka a list of potential projects and c) the next strategic steps, which they can further facilitate with us.

AR Overlay, Printing, Packaging, Displays (starting from 1.500€)

The most obvious solution is to augment real-world objects or print -basically bringing dead paper back to life. From catalogues to business cards or paintings in a museum, anything can become awesome.

We therefore offer to ‘rent’ a spot in our shoutr.AR app which already embeds all features or to get your own branded AR App. We then offer adding and augmenting content for a few hundred Euros just to get started.

3D Digitalisation (starting from 1.000 €)

If you don’t own any 3D content, then you’ll probably need to create some. There are ways you could do it yourself using photogrammetry or you could simply hire someone to either scan your object (e.g. laser scanning), reduce the file and polygon size or build it from scratch.

3D Product Visualization and Virtual Try-Ons (starting from 20.000€)

After 2D visualisation the next step is 3D-modelling of every product around you. There will be a digital twin for physical products sold online for you to get used to it, to try it on, see if it fits in your living room and so on. This will certainly increase conversion for all sorts of products, but especially for things like glasses, watches, shoes, clothing and other items in and around your home.

AR portals (starting from 25.000€)

One of the most mesmerizing things out there which is perfect for tourism, culture, professional onboarding in enterprise, etc. are AR portals.

With ARKit from Apple, or ARCore from Google you are able to detect vertical and horizontal planes and therefore you are able to place a virtual object there such as a door which you could then enter physically.

360° (volumetric) Videos inside (starting from 1.000€)

A good add-on for AR portals are 360-degree videos to showcase, for example, a location which people normally can’t access. You can easily create the video yourself with consumer hardware (e.g. Insta360 or Ricoh Theta or GoPro Fusion) or hire an expert to produce high quality results.

You can also go and start a project with volumetric video, a technology allowing you to create real 360°-videos by being filmed with various cameras later being stitched together.

Virtual Avatars (starting from 1.000€)

If you want 3D models of real people, volumetric capturing is definitely the way to go. Until now the creation of realistic-looking and realistically-behaving avatars has been a tough challenge. The more photorealism you want, the faster you dive into the ‘uncanny valley’ where your brain rejects this avatar from being realistic. There are already companies creating well-rigged models but if you want the best results, it is probably best to go with volumetric capturing.

AR Trainings (starting from 30.000€)

The use of AR in training and (self) leARning environments can decrease training times by up to 30% while increasing retention rates by over 40% and save classroom costs up to 50%.

learning with AR

If you are able to experience Augmented Reality education it is far more effective than any other form of education.

By 2025, 75% of your workforce will be Millenials and you won’t be able to train them with classical powerpoint presentations. The ideal leARning environment will be device-based & interactive with real-time teaching and more visualisation.

3D Food & Drink Menus (starting from 5.000€)

Like 3D products for physical goods, there is a huge demand for photorealistic 3D food, drinks, snacks and everything you can consume quickly. With AR, precise orders, upsells and cross-sells are easy things to achieve. Just imagine a 3D pizza where next to it a tasty beverage pops up.

Especially for all the early adopters, you’ll have a big advantage in social media outreach from your engaged customers for this new approach of food and drink selling.

Entertainment, Marketing and Event Technologies (starting from 2.000€ )

You can use AR Overlays, 3D Digitalisation, 3D Product Visualisation, AR Portals, Virtual Avatars, AR trainings or 3D food all along the value chain from R&D to aftersales. But let’s not forget that marketing is also a lot of fun and adds up on the businss side. There are some quite astonishing AR/MR installations which give a tremendous experience for small and large groups of people to engage.

This can be perfect for conferences, meetings, fairs, team events, shows and such.

What should you take away from this?

Start. Now. Whatever it will be, just get started and learn which processes can help you and your business to succeed in the future. Some of the content you already have and some of the content you create can be reused again and again to create different experiences and save you a lot of money.

«We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don’t let yourself be lulled into inaction» (Bill Gates, 1996)

Overview of shoutr labs field of application