Hyper CRC is an innovative spatial design platform that fuses virtual reality with tangible motion-tracked models, thus enabling companies and their clients to physically experience design visions.
Imagine you’re an interior designer working for a large airplane company. You’ve been assigned to create an exquisite yet functional airplane interior. Being a versatile artist, you’re likely going to prepare a couple of designs showcasing different seat arrangements and decorative features. Putting your client’s satisfaction first, you’ll want to give them a full experience of what sitting in every designed space feels like. So far, given the cost & time of preparing such a product showcase, it has been reserved only for the determined buyers. Yet, product presentations are likely to change with Hyper CRC.
Innovation: There aren’t too many mixed reality products available right now, let alone projects that can prove to be groundbreaking for the whole market segment. Hyper CRC is an example of an initiative that pushes the technological boundaries, uses immersive technology, and attracts the attention of the XR tech community.
Ease of use: Think of the airplane example from the introduction. Until Hyper arrived, manufacturers had to physically build interiors with materials desired by their clients. Imagine how costly and time-consuming it was. With Hyper, a set of VR goggles, a couple of seats, and sample fabrics are more than enough to provide a convincing experience. Utilizing them is considerably cheaper and easier to deliver while giving the client higher flexibility in terms of the materials reviewed.
Sustainability: Sticking to the airplane example, imagine what happened with the mocked-up interiors. No, they weren’t recycled for every other showcase. They’ve gone to waste. VR has proven to be 100% eco-friendly. Even the materials used for the touch & feel part of the experience can be reused.
The idea to bring Hyper to life was a chain reaction. First came the Virgin Atlantic, who had a plan to improve their process of showcasing plane interiors. Low cost and bigger customization—VR seemed like the way to go. With this idea, they’ve paid a visit to London’s UNIT9 branch to work on the product further.
Due to the project scale and its breakthrough technology factor, multiple partners needed to be involved in delivering Hyper as an extra sleek and unique experience:
is a bridge company between European Union funds and partners responsible for Hyper CRC.
The Project Management aspect of the product was coordinated by. design studio, responsible for the marketing of HyperCRC and market validation among prospective clients, was assisted by developing MVPs to demonstrate Hyper to prospective clients.
Last but not least, there’s us:. Our main role was to help UNIT9 with the underlying technology of Hyper and digital assets, including Hyper website & Hyper SDK.
Hyper CRC is a tool that helps to create mixed reality applications where you can display the virtual world and interact with it physically. The issue with VR apps is that the items you see in front of your eyes are not touchable, intractable since they are not physically there. Hyper is trying to create a bridge between these two worlds by mapping physical objects in VR and make them interactable.
One of the MVPs of Hyper includes two actual airplane seats, so when you put on the VR goggles,you find yourself inside an airplane. The virtual seats appear exactly at the same place where the physical seats are so you can sit and adjust their details to your likings: including material or color.
Since Hyper’s use cases are plenty and it can be applied to many industries, we proposed to create a core SDK and place our reusable code there. This will help us when we are working on different projects, prototypes, or MVPs because the core framework will always be the same. Apart from that, we’ve created a tower defense game using the Hyper SDK. No doubt, it’s a great way to showcase tech capabilities through gamification.
In our book, a good project must be challenging. And Hyper’s sole description sounds like one of these groundbreaking challenges.
Indeed, that was the case. For the duration of this project, we had to deal with two major obstacles:
Technology - VR tech is getting better... but it’s still not perfect. Headsets still cause eye fatigue for many users, causing the experience to be limited in time (usually no more than 10-15 minutes). Trackers sometimes get blocked out and don’t track the positions accurately. Interactions are still limited because of the lack of a common, solid technology for tracking user's hand movements.
Organisational - Collaborating with 4 different partners is a challenge in itself. Each partner had a separate vision for the product and coming to a unanimous decision could have been really hard.
Solution? We had weekly partner meetings and each partner summarized the week from their perspective. These meetings were really helpful for creating a bigger picture of the product. We also divided the tasks based on partners’ responsibilities. We have all agreed that the business development is in Viewport’s hands, while production is on Unit9 and Apptension.
“Apptension work on the HyperCRC project over the past year has been absolutely amazing. Our director has been very happy with their work.”