Virtually visiting houses with wonen.tv

As of Wednesday, the 18th of January, a new television program called Wonen.tv is aired on tv-channel één. The program focuses on living in all its aspects: viewers and readers are given tips and information about living, renting, selling and renovating houses. Besides a TV format, the program also has an elaborate website that offers surfers a virtual visit to the houses seen on television. To make this happen, VRT Sandbox collaborated with the company YUME VR and the editorial team of wonen.tv to build a 360° video player for the web.

A Sandbox project with YUME VR and één.

A Sandbox project with YUME VR and één.

In order to offer its audience an online virtual reality experience, the team chose for webVR, a form of virtual reality that is completely based on web technology. Although this technology is only at the initial stage, a 360° web player could be built thanks to the expertise of LucidWeb in webVR. VRT Sandbox provided the editorial team with sufficient support and 360° camera’s to get going. Together with YUME VR, they made content and added possibilities for interaction. As a viewer, you are able to not only virtually walk around in the houses, but you can also activate videos, pictures and audio with extra architectural information. The application works on a computer, tablet and smartphone. However, you get an optimal virtual reality experience by clicking on the cardboard icon and visit your dream house with a virtual reality headset.

WebVR – the tech talk

By means of an experimental version of webVR API, VRT Sandbox was able to work with 360° material via the browser. This enabled them to make a cubemap out of an equirectangular image. They built the cubemap by projecting the image on separate surfaces within the cube. In this panorama, they applied webVR interaction points.

There are different types of interaction points, each with their own icon. The first interaction point is where you move from one panorama to the other and change cubemaps. In addition, they applied media interaction points for additional information. The whole is hosted via an i-frame on a ftp server.

Pay a virtual visit yourself.

Interested in a virtual collaboration with YUME VR? Check out their website.