UK-based Igloo Vision creates 360° immersive projection environments, such as domes, cylinders and cubes, which enable users to engage with any type of 360°, virtual reality (VR) or immersive content. It is a bit like stepping into a giant VR headset and, because entire teams can get inside, it is ideal for collaborative teamwork. Clients such as Accenture, BP, Dell, Microsoft and NTT have installed Igloo systems in their offices and innovation hubs. Through the partnership with AVI-SPL, it is now possible to retrofit the Igloo technology in any existing room, irrespective of its size, shape or dimensions. This means that any meeting room or office space can now double-up as an immersive workspace.
For ISE, the two companies have equipped a 15-foot by 8-foot meeting room with the solution, and are showcasing a range of immersive content and use cases. For example, 360° videos and presentations will be used to outline the concept, web-based analytics platforms allow teams to interrogate data, tools such as Revizto and Autodesk can be used for collaborative design reviews and rapid prototyping, and a range of Unity- and Unreal-based software can be used for immersive training applications.
The solution enables the emerging trend for immersive workspaces, which is being discussed by several technology analysts and service providers. For example, Gartner has named immersive workspaces as a technology CIOs should be actively investigating in 2020, and suggests that “immersive technologies, such as augmented and virtual reality are ready for mainstream businesses for training and immersive conference room services”. Also, in its technology predictions for 2020, NTT talks of immersive, responsive ‘phygital’ spaces, where the physical world blends with the digital.
A core component of the offering is the ICE Box, Igloo’s custom-built media server. Whereas systems integrators have traditionally relied on a standard AV server to create immersive installations, the ICE Box offers a wide range of additional Shared VR functionality — for example, integration with game engines and visualization tools (which you get from Igloo Realtime), the ability to play content simultaneously in headsets on immersive screens and the Igloo (which you get from Igloo VR Spectator), the ability to interface with a range of VR controllers (which you get with Igloo Interact), and the ability to display web pages and cloud-based content (which you get from Igloo Web).
To deliver the solution commercially, AVI-SPL and Igloo Vision will use a combination of Lidar scanning and artificial intelligence to map a room, create a bespoke projection template, specify the right projectors and projection points, and configure the Igloo Media Player. This will enable the process of retrofitting an existing space to be largely automated and industrialized, which minimizes the cost and speeds up the installation process. The partnership combines Igloo’s Shared VR expertise with AVI-SPL’s global reach, its credentials as a digital workplace services provider, and its client relationships, including over 80% of Fortune 100 companies.