As the long-term digital partner of The Wayback, Untapped has continued to manage the technical aspects of their product. Recently, we have released a new version of The Wayback mobile application (app) that has improved the VR video quality and therefore user experience.
In order to help those with Alzheimer's or other types of dementia, their mobile app delivers fully reconstructed films in 3D that help trigger past memories. This is not only a beautiful idea, but a proven therapeutic tool and a cause that we fully support!
In order for the app to deliver the most realistic viewing experience to users, we implemented Virtual Reality (VR) video to deliver a 360 degree viewing experience that truly immerses the user into the room or event. The 1958 Queen’s Coronation and 1966 World Cup are the key experiences so far, with more coming soon.
Due to the specific nature of the intended user base the app needs to be incredibly easy to use, and that included use of Google cardboard as the viewing mechanism.
While the first version of this app used Google Cardboard SDK to deliver the experience technically in a cost effective manner, the code provided by Google to achieve this is sadly no longer maintained by Google. Although there is a brilliant open source community who do help maintain it, updates consequently can be slow. On top of this, the release of iOS 14 (Apple’s operating system for iPhones) further hampered the viewing experience, prompting Untapped to research and implement a new solution.
Our solution to this… Headjack.IO
We were able to work side-by-side with the fantastic team at Headjack.IO to integrate their VR video player into The Wayback’s application. Headjack.IO are committed to maintaining quality viewing across all their supported devices, as well as provide a Video content management system (CMS) that is brilliant at optimising VR video assets and delivering them over to applications, via API’s.
This will not only improve the iOS and Android versions of this app, but it will also help deliver the same user experience on higher end VR headsets such as Oculus or Pico, enabling the business to scale up in the future.
At Untapped, It has been an absolute pleasure to support The Wayback with their award-winning and exciting product. We hope this partnership will continue for a long time and we can’t wait to tell you all about the further exciting updates coming!