As WHOW as Possible
An Oculus Rift- and WizDish-powered virtual walk through Dominator´s luxury yacht „Ilumen“ blazes the trail for immersive presentation media in show and tradefair environments.
In the middle of last January the international boat industry converged at the “boot” Düsseldorf, Europe´s biggest „dry“ boat show. For the whole week, 240.000 visitors toured 17 halls to see 1.650 exhibitors from 57 nations showing motor yachts, sailboats and latest equipment for boating, fishing, diving and all kinds of watersports.
Shows like the boot 2015 present yacht builders with huge logistic challenges. Each year their exhibition yachts have to travel thousands of miles by road and water to be present at the big international shows, with large yachts demanding special oversize transport arrangements. The competition is tough and the clientele is demanding. Those who are in the market for a large yacht expect precise, authentic and convincing demonstrations of the package on offer. Contracts are nearly never closed spontaneously. A typical sales process is lengthy, involving many meetings and inspection visits. Unlike in more prosaic investment decisions, yacht buyers initially have to fall in love with their imagination, wishing themselves away to a seagoing very special home away from home where they spend the best time of the year with friends and family. Selling a yacht is an art in itself, and a time-consuming one at that.
To bring the buyer´s imagination to the most impressive life possible, Austrian-Italian yacht-builder Dominator introduced something completely new and very special at the boot 2015, presenting Ilumen D26M, Dominator´s latest large yacht with capacity for eight to ten passengers plus crew, as a fully walkable virtual 3D-world. Visitors could tour the whole 26 meter luxury yacht virtually, from the luxurious cabin to the spacious sundeck.
This virtual yacht presentation has been years in the making. In 2010, the Austrian entrepreneur family Pernsteiner took control of Dominator. He himself a very early supporter of the Oculus kick-starter campaign, Christoph Pernsteiner soon realized the full potential of VR technology. “I am an enthusiastic early VR adopter and have looked into this technology intensely, but until very recently it has not been feasible for our sales and marketing purposes. Now it is, and we assigned the software development to the Netural Lab, because we instantly built a rapport with those guys, found lots of common ground regarding technology and really liked their flexible approach.“
Rift was the technology platform of choice, with the current second developer edition of the Oculus VR Head Mounted Display offering the fastest sensors. The second important piece of hardware was the WizDish movement sensor, a platform which enables real step-by-step walks through virtual rooms. Unity was chosen as the game-engine for building of the virtual 3D Ilumen.