VR platform development
Hashplay is an ambitious startup with a clear mission – to make virtual reality available for everyone. The aim of VR platform development is to allow every user to create his own content in virtual reality and to share it with others. Hashplay is also about to bring VR marketing on a completely new level.
VR platform development – how it all began
Hashplay was the first experience of VR platform development for ThinkMobiles. Starting the work with new technologies is always kind of a challenge, which our Unity3D team accepted.
The work on the project was definitely innovative. The developers had to create completely new solutions during the VR platform development process.
The American-German startup Hashplay was our partner in this project. The CEO Jahn-Philipp Mohr, CTO Ingo Nadler and CMO Jan Schlüter founded the company in 2015. They decided to take promising and unoccupied niche – content creation for virtual reality.
From its first steps, the startup partnered with ThinkMobiles and delegated the VR platform’s player development to our Unity3D team.
As Hashplay is an innovative VR content creation platform, a lot of features were the real challenge for the developers.
- Virtual reality player for 3D video streaming
By the start of the project there were no ready solutions for 3D video streaming.
- High resolution of textures
High resolution caused application crash on most of devices.
- WebGL for user-generated VR content preview
Custom solution for WebGL to preview the changes in the browser
Hashplay started as a game streaming platform. But the development and testing process proved – it can become a powerful VR content platform.
The primary goals were:
- Game streaming platform in virtual reality
To allow the game lovers to record and share their gaming process with fans in the virtual environment.
- Advertising platform
Aimed to bring the VR marketing to a completely new level.
Then the positioning of Hashplay on the market changed and resulted in some extra goals for the VR platform development team:
- VR content creation platform
Allows to upload and edit own static and dynamic content in VR.
- VR platform for sharing own content
The uploaded photos and videos became public.
- VR marketing platform
Allows to play the advertising videos in VR environment.
- Custom VR player
Now Unity3D engine offers ready solutions for 3D players like Universal Media Player (UMP) or AVPro. On the start of the project there were no existing solutions available. So our developers had to build a custom player for Unity3D, which was quite time-consuming.
- Power of Two for the textures
There were two possible solutions to avoid the VR content platform crash due to high image resolution. The first one was to reduce the quality of images. In this case, user experience suffered as well. Together with Hashplay team, we found an efficient alternative – to apply the Power of Two to the existing textures.
- Custom solution for WebGL player
Our partners decided to add a helpful function to the VR editor – the preview on the computer screen. WebGL doesn’t give ready solutions for such a problem. The only way is to build a custom player with C++ – that is what the Unity3D team is currently working on.
From our partner:
- Concept and structure of the VR content platform
- Ready to use visual elements
From our side:
- 2 Unity3D developers
The VR platform development process started a year ago and is still going on. Since that time Hashplay in partnership with ThinkMobiles released an Android VR app and an iOS VR app. These apps allow full immersion into virtual reality environment with the help of Google Cardboard.
Our team is currently working on the front-end of the WebGL player.
Features and Benefits
Hashplay is the multifunctional VR content platform with a bunch of useful features. The users can:
- Create own content in VR
Upload photos and videos shoot with 360 camera app, edit in the online editor.
- Share custom VR content
Make your own videos and photos available to other Hashplay users.
- Record and share game streams
Game streams in virtual reality.
- Advertise on VR platform
New opportunities for VR marketing. The ability to play the advertising videos in virtual reality environment.
Evaluation and Summary
Hashplay tends to become one of the leading VR platforms on the market.
In 2016 Hashplay was recognized with the Eco Internet Award in the category “B2C Entertainment”. This is a huge step both for our partner and for us as the technical executor, proving that we are on the right path creating value for the users.
Also interested in VR platform development?
Virtual reality is the technology of the nearest future. ThinkMobiles is happy to help our partners to become a part of it.