A Refreshingly Simple Idea in Remote Collab
Avatour is the brainchild of Nokia veterans, Devon Copley and Prasad Balasubramanian, who first launched the parent company Imeve backed by a seed funding round. In 2019, Imeve launched its 5G-ready VR telepresence app Avatour in a beta version. Avatour was quick to take off, and in 2020 Imeve decided to discontinue its previous product line in favour of the new VR communication platform – effectively rebranding as Avatour.
The product’s value proposition is startlingly simple – it lets you share 360-degree videos from a remote location in real-time, without the hassle of travelling there in person. Last year, the company partnered with 360-degree camera company, Insta360, to come up with a VR-based communication platform in response to coronavirus travel restrictions.
Let us review its top features and why they make a difference.
The full Avatour solution package includes a 360-degree camera, a mobile device for streaming, an optional audio headset, and a tripod/selfie stick for greater mobility. Using the gear, you can create a live virtual tour, complete with streamable audio.
Here are the functionalities to expect:
Meeting numbers and capacity
Avatour supports up to 5 guests logging in from any location in the world, as long as they have an active internet connection. This is because the platform is entirely cloud-based, allowing any time, anywhere accessibility. What’s more, users don’t even need dedicated VR gear to connect. As long as they have a mobile device, a desktop, or a laptop, they can join the session, view the 360-degree video feed, and talk to the host in real-time.
Avatour explicitly mentions that the platform is suitable for hospitality, construction, real estate, learning/training, wealth management, and recruitment – but we believe there is a use case for any industry that has to showcase properties in the physical world. Currently, the company offers r4eady solutions in all of these industries, as well as a few others like pharma and insurance.
The meeting experience
Inviting a person to an Avatour meeting is as simple as setting it up on your calendar via the Avatour Host app. Participants would receive an email and on accepting, the time would be blocked on their calendar – just as in most meeting platforms like Google Calendar/Meet.
Avatour’s ease of use and reliability has endeared it to some of the world’s leading companies. Its customer roster includes Colgate Palmolive, Facebook, Nokia, and NTT Docomo, among others.
What’s not to like about a cloud-based remote meeting platform that lets the host stream 360-degree video in real-time? For companies with this specific use case, Avatour’s technology is impressive and surprisingly simple in equal parts. Apart from the five guests limit (which would expectedly increase, given that it’s still early days for the company), Avatour has a winning value proposition.
There are two things to note when considering Avatour as a collaboration tool – the hardware outlay, in terms of a dedicated camera, mobile device, etc. and the meeting participant limit. Keeping this in mind, Avatour is definitely worth a look.