Whenever I come across a cool new product or multimedia company, I normally inquire about their product offering and costs so that I can hopefully share it with you. One such company, Immersive Media, recently sent me their product specs and, since I didn’t sign a nondisclosure agreement, I assume that I can share it with you. So let’s dissect their business plan …
“Immersive Media is the pioneer and leading world provider of 360Â°, full motion, interactive videos.” Think the 2005 version of interactive panoramas in Flash. But, this company does more than just scene-setter rotations. In addition to street-level views, they do interactive videos for advertising campaigns like Red Bull, documentary footage for companies like National Geographic, and stock footage around the U.S. for any type of client.
They use a Dodeca 2360 camera system with a “compact ball with 11 sensors arranged as a dodecahedron.” It also has “four directional microphones built in for full surround sound.” There are a number of different mounts for the camera, such as on a vehicle or helicopter. It also has an underwater casing.
Customers can purchase the “GeoImmersive Viewer 2.0,” which is software that syncs the 360-degree video to floor plans or other geospatial images. Other product add-on’s include the “im360 desktop player,” “im360 Flash Viewer SDK,” and “im360 iPhone/iPad(SDK).” The latter two products are players that can be customized and built upon by C++ programmers.
Looking at their post production prices, the $200/hour rate is fairly similar to what I suggested in my “pricing your services” post last January. Their daily rate for equipment and operator is $2,500.
On the other hand, companies can buy the camera kit, base unit, hard drive, travel case and software for $45,595. All of the additional products mentioned above are Ã la carte, such as $2,500 for the iPhone/iPad software or $3,500 for the vehicle mount kit.
Obviously renting is much more affordable than purchasing a unit, but I wonder how many customers are comfortable with a $50k price point. Movie studios or marketing VPs might not blink an eye when signing that check, but I’d love to see this technology become more affordable for other multimedia producers and companies.
Also, it definitely has the “cool factor,” but a big part of me wants to break away from the player, which, in my opinion, keeps it from being truly immersive. I’m ready for interactive 360-degree content to take over my entire screen. I don’t want to see a progress bar as if it’s still a linear video. Also, I’d love to see technology improve so that they don’t have to cover up the camera with a huge black splotch.
What are your thoughts on this type of immersive video technology?