New face of virtual reality tour

February 14th, 2007 at 12:00 am
 


It appears that online virtual reality tours are becoming more innovative plus people are finding more and more uses for them. One of the new VR websites is Mapwing.com , a site that offers an easy to follow map building program which users can utilize in sharing their own virtual reality tours online. The website features the usual stuff: interactive maps, images, and comments. It is also possible to copy specific URL links to tour pages or embed a tour in various personal Web sites or blogs or you could even add the links to a real estate MLS website.

Virtual reality tours such as Mapwing are great for showcasing real estate or properties. These visual tours allow possible investors or clients to explore a location without standing up from the comfort of their own chairs. The key, of course, in any visual tour is taking the right photographs. The idea for a real estate VR tour is to create a picturesque or panoramic view of the said location.

However, VR tours are not only great for businesses, real estate, schools and tourist attractions, but to tell a good story as well just like the way a contributor used Mapwing to tell a light and cute story of his two cats. Entitled “Seamus and Angus: Two Friendly Cats” , go take a virtual tour here: http://www.mapwing.com/explore/view_tour.php?t=IIBaaEssINLYE. You can explore other VR tours by searching on an inbox bar or by categorizing them into most recent, most popular or by the most popular of the week.

Making your own tour is not that difficult. Mapwing uses its own online creator. The web based app has an easy to follow instruction guide and will allow you to draw or place a custom map or floor plan, add photos, create your own descriptions, connect points to create interactive tours, and will let you add hotspots which are links to images that you want to have a detailed close-up or even to specific Web sites. For a normal real estate tour, you will need at least 15 point or more than 60 image views. One thing that I would like, however, is having some room to add music scores to the digital tours. Mapwing offers free basic tours but also has premium tours which gives more location points, higher resolution maps, and more. The website uses Adobe Flash to display finished tours.

But the site still could use some added features. For one it could use some tagging or at the very least additional categories like real estate, churches, travels, universities and offices and business establishments. This will encourage contributions and facilitate quicker searches.