It’s tough to decide which of the many VR/AR collaboration platforms is the best option for your team, especially when considering the challenges of emerging technology in an increasingly remote work culture. When entering into the VR/AR space, it’s important to take time to think about how your long-term business goals and team needs fit into the available solutions, not vice-versa.
Below are some of the most important questions to consider when deciding to adopt a new VR/AR collaboration platform in 2020:
How do you plan on viewing your 3D files? Do you plan on just using one type of device (e.g. Oculus Quest,) or do you need the versatility of switching between multiple formats (e.g. desktop, mobile/tethered VR, AR?) It’s important to consider what your potential clients might need for presentations as well.
Are you just looking for a platform to view designs in 3D? Or, are you looking for something that provides more interactivity to move objects and ideate in real time? Having true spatial interaction allows teams to prototype ideas and make design decisions collaboratively.
What would an ideal license model look like for you? Do you anticipate having just one person locked into a fixed account, or are you looking for the flexibility of floating licenses for multiple team members to trade off? Are you planning on only sharing your designs with your internal team, or would you benefit from having unlimited free guest viewer accounts to share with clients?
How would your ideal VR platform handle file storage? Are you comfortable keeping your assets in local storage, or would you benefit from the freedom of unlimited cloud storage? Large firms that work with distributed teams, heavy files, and collaborative workflows often opt for cloud storage for the flexibility and security it provides.
What types of integrations are you looking for in your ideal platform? Do you plan on using tools like SketchUp, Revit, or BIM 360 as a core part of your workflow? If so, having seamless integrations with these tools could save time for your team with quick importing and live updates.
Are you looking to try a VR ‘productivity’ tool to test the broad capabilities of remote collaboration? Or, are you looking for a more specialized work platform designed specifically for architects, environmental designers, or BIM Managers? Understanding the real business value of each platform can help lead better team alignment and executive approval for long-term adoption of VR for team collaboration.
Does your team need VR visualization for just one person at a time? Or, would you benefit from sharing a collaborative experience with multiple people at the same time? Seeing your collaborators in real time also allows you to have the same view of tools, UI, and body language for a better shared understanding in the design process.
How do you want collaboration in your spaces to take form? Some traditional designers prefer the control of manually sharing static files for VR collaboration. However, many progressive design teams are embracing the power of real-time collaboration in persistent spaces that can evolve with their projects. This creates the experience of a real “place” that is always up-to-date, lives in the cloud, and accessible from anywhere in the world.
We hope this guide gives you some practical questions to help you find the best VR/AR collaboration platform for your team. If you want to learn more about these pros and cons, or are curious to try out our top-rated platform, we’d love to talk more! Click here to set up a chat with someone on our team.