RICOH Theta Developer Contest 2015 winner holobuilder

bitstars wins RICOH THETA Developer Contest in Tokyo

In Tokyo, the web application holobuilder.com made by German start-up company bitstars just won the worldwide RICOH Theta Developer Contest held by Japanese technology provider RICOH. holobuilder could push through the fierce competition of 72 participants and 173 submitted projects from all over the world. The web-based application convinced the jury with its innovative possibilities in perfection to enhance 360 degree spherical panorama with 3D objects.

Tokio, Japan/ Aug. 20, 2015. In Tokyo, the German start-up company bitstars just won amazingly the developer contest by the Japanese technology provider RICOH in collaboration with the YRP Ubiquitous Networking Laboratory. The requirement for participation was the usage of the RICOH THETA, a special camera for 360° panoramic photos, to make more convenient or provide new methods of application.
With holobuilder, a web tool that can, among other things, be used for the augmentation of 360 degree panoramic images with 3d elements, the partly in Palo Alto, California, USA and Aachen, Germany located company was able to stand up to strong competition from 15 countries. Inter alia the submissions came from the strongholds of technology start-ups, such as Silicon Valley, Tel Aviv or of course Japan itself. holobuilder could push through the fierce competition of 72 participants and 173 submitted projects from all over the world.

copyright foto by http://ascii.jp/elem/000/001/041/1041109/

bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari among all other awarded participants of the RICOH Theta Developer Contest (front row, third from the right).  – copyright by ascii

 

„holobuilder received the Grand Prize for its implementation using open components, the degree of perfection and practicality as well“ said jury member Ken Sakamura, Professor of Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies at the University of Tokyo.

The guiding theme of the whole competition was „innovation“ and the prizes were awarded on the basis of the evaluation criteria of creativity (originality), future outlook (potential, extensibility) and benefit (practicality). „holobuilder adds stamps and comments to RICOH THETA photos. Such a function is common for 2D photos. But the vision of incorporating the function for spherical image handling, moreover the feeling of affixing stereoscopic stamp in space is innovative. I feel the potential in this direction” as Sakamura stated further.

Holobuilder convinced the jury with its ease of use and originality. After importing the 360° photosphere taken with the RICOH Theta 360° panorama camera into holobuilder, the possibility of looking into any direction in the image gives the impression of actually being located directly within the recorded scene. Through further augmentation with various 3D models, texts and symbols, new and innovative ways for impressive experiences in virtual reality open up. From a journey of the most beautiful places of the last private vacation to a professional guided tour through the future apartment, both experiences broaden with exciting virtual 3D models of the desired furniture – creativity is boundless. The resulting „holos“ can be viewed on any mobile device such as tablet or smartphone, android or iOS. For the even more immersive fun, holobuilder can change into a special mode for Virtual Reality headsets like Google Cardboard. Built-in functions for sharing on social networks or integration into an own website round the offer.

copyright foto by http://ascii.jp/elem/000/001/041/1041109/

bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari accepting the Grand Prize from RICOH CEO Shiro Kondo. – copyright foto by ascii

For this concept holobuilder was awarded the „Grand Prize“ and in a celebratory ceremony at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Aomi, Koto-ku, Tokyo) RICOH CEO Shiro Kondo himself handed over the prize to bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari. He was rewarded with a cash prize of 1,000,000 yen (about 7,500 euros) and an additional trophy.

Panel Talk with bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari at AWE 2015

bitstars enters the world stage: Augmented World Expo 2015

The Augmented World Expo (AWE) is home to over 200 companies with backgrounds in Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR), wearable technology as well as the ‚Internet of Things‘ (IoT), with bitstars being a part of it in 2015:
CEO Mostafa Akbari and CTO Simon Heinen were among thousands of tech-professionals participating in over 20 workshops, 200 interactive demos and 100 first-class talks from industry leaders and pioneers.

The slogan of the whole event was „Share the superpowers of AR, VR, Wearable Tech and IoT with the World!“ and this is exactly what bitstars did, by giving three interesting talks about the future of AR for enterprises:

  • Simon Heinen elaborated on the topic of the IoT and AR in a talk about ‘The perfect match: Augmented Reality + M2M Communication’.
  • Mostafa Akbari, who has a lot of real-world implementation experience, met consumers and providers alike to discuss the practicalities of ‘How to Expand AR Adoption in Enterprises’ in a moderated panel. The whole discussion is available on YouTube.
  • A spontaneous talk about safety precaution in working environments as well as the potential and advantages of new AR goggles completed the event for us.

In detail the bitstars performance schedule looked like following:

  • Internet Of Things and AR, June 8, 3:15pm – 4:00pm, Room 212
    Simon Heinen (bitstars) – The perfect match: Augmented Reality + M2M Communication; Tom Wesselman (Plantronics) – The IoT: Possibilities, Challenges, and Real World Questions; Brock Kolls (CN2) – Data and Analytics in AR/VR
  • How to expand AR adoption, June 8, 5:00pm – 5:45pm, Theater
    Panel moderated by Alex Hill (CN2) with Juergen Lumeira (Bosch), Paul Davies (Boeing), Fridolin Wild (DDR), Mostafa Akbari (Founder & CEO, bitstars), Joe Metzger (Johnson and Johnson).
    A discussion forum on augmented reality advocating the alliance of enterprises. Main issue is the promotion of the expansion of enterprise AR and the adaption to open and interoperable standards.
  • Spontaneous talk on the topic of Safety and risk factors in Augmented Reality for Enterprises, June 8
    Mostafa Akbari (bitstars) – Device, Human & Environment safety and risk factors

For an exclusive insight take a virtual tour through the expo area or (because networking is important too) join right here at the AWE after party:

To summarize, it was a great event that provided an interesting impression of the current state of the AR and VR business, combined with great opportunities to meet amazing industry experts and a perfect mix of various events and activities. bitstars is looking forward to next year, for which the registration is already open!

bitstars meets Gartner for Industry 4.0 Round-Table

The past Thursday, bitstars VP of Customer & Data Analytics & Optimization Maximilian Speicher participated in a round-table discussion about Industry 4.0, organized and hosted by Garnter in Frankfurt. As a tech provider in Industry 4.0, for us the event was particularly interesting and helpful for staying up to date regarding the current AR & VR ecosystem and potential cooperation partners.

Equipped with a Ricoh THETA 360° camera and his smartphone, Max demonstrated the capabilities of augmented and virtual reality that can be leveraged using our cutting-edge web-platform holobuilder. Also, he engaged in fruitful discussions about interactive AR instruction manuals and OPC UA, which are two core use cases of our platform. Especially Bettina Tratz-Ryan, Research VP at Gartner, enjoyed playing around with the spherical camera a bit, as you can see in the #360selfie below.

Create amazing AR and VR content in HoloBuilder.com

Abandoned Metaio users find a new home: holobuilder.com

Since Apple has acquired Metaio everything you can get from their website is product support via E-Mail or Helpdesk. This might seem to be annoying, but it also offers the great opportunity to make new experiences, probably with even better results in the same domain:

Our free, web-based tool holobuilder.com can become your new home for creative Virtual and Augmented Reality content creations.

HoloBuilder lets you create great 3D content for AR and VR for free.

The holobuilder Editor runs directly in your browser, enabling you to create great 3D content for AR and VR for free.

All you need is a web browser, no download, no installation, no struggles with system incompatibilities:

  • holobuilder lets you create great 3D content for AR and VR for free (as seen in our video)!
  • It is a simple and powerful platform that lets you create 360° presentations from photospheres as well.
  • Build your own virtual reality by interlinking your spheres and adding fantastic 3D models.
  • Share your projects with the World or embed them right into your website.
  • With support for stereoscopic 3D you are enabled to dive deep directly into the new world of VR:
    With the Google Cardboard viewer, the Player App from Google Play or directly from holobuilder.
    It is the simplest way to build your own VR experience.

And just in case you want more or something different, don’t worry:
As a start-up company at bitstars we are flexible enough to realize almost any special requirements, just drop us an E-Mail!

But also with the default version of holobuilder.com you get access to amazing benefits:

  1. Totally free!
    There’s no catch.
  2. Boundless
    Create a virtual reality using your own photospheres and 3D models.
  3. To go
    Use your projects everywhere with HoloPlayer.
  4. Ready to Launch
    Quick results with ready-to-use projects and 3D models.

So stop wasting valuable time being bothered by Apple’s latest buy of Metaio and start creating using holobuilder.com.

Discussion at the CeBIT 2015 about Smart Glasses and Wearables in general.

bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari discussing the future of Wearables for Industry 4.0 at the CeBIT 2015

CeBIT 2015 Hannover, 18 March, 11:40 AM – 01:00 PM

bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari participated  at a discussion round table at the CeBIT 2015 with Thorben Fasching (hmmh multimediahaus AG), Christoph Sauer (nuveon GmbH), Prof. Dr. Carl B. Welker (Director, IIW Institut für Informationswirtschaft) and Prof. Hendrik Speck (Professor of Digital Media at the University of Applied Sciences Kaiserslautern/ Department of Computer Sciences/ Interactive Media and head of the Information Architecture/ Search Engine Laboratory). Focus of the discussion was the actual potential wearables bear for the future and who really benefits from their use. Therefore, the benefits of wearables such as Google Glass turning us into „super humans“ as well as the dark side of this featuristic developement considering privacy issues and the social isolation of the users were conversed. Both the usage in our daily private life and the benefits in our professional life were topics of the discussion. In this context Industry 4.0 as well as the reaction of employees to the new technologies were important questions to be examined.

Check out the different opinions and perspectives on wearables and their application. Follow the whole talk in german here:

bitstars CEO speaks at CeBIT 2015

bitstars CEO speaks at the CeBIT 2015 about digital transformation

CeBIT 2015 Hannover, 16 – 20 March

bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari speaks at the CeBIT 2015 for the event series ‚Digitization from A-Z‚. Besides other speakers Mostafa will talk about the role of Google Glass as well as Wearables and the possibility of them soon being applicated everywhere in context of the digital transformation. The presentation will be hold in german under the topic „Google Glass und Wearables – bald überall im ständigen Einsatz?“ („Google Glass and Wearables – soon permanently implemented everywhere always“).

The talk will take place on 18 March between 11:40 AM – 01:00 PM at the CeBIT 2015 in Hall 5, Stand D04.

 

HoloBuilder alpha editor

HoloBuilder alpha Out Now!

bitstars released the HoloBuilder today!

AACHEN, February 16th, 2015

The HoloBuilder is a webeditor to create AR and VR experiences for the smartphone and tablet as well as devices such as Google Glasses, Oculus Rift or the new HoloLense. Go ahead and build your own AR and VR application by enriching 2D, 3D, or 360° VR marker through a broad variety of objects and animations.

The first version HoloBuilder alpha is available to try out the new experience. Just go to www.holobuilder.com and check it out yourself.

 

HoloBuilder aplha release banner

 

Smart Glasses view from stage at the Cross Border Innovation Conference 2015

High-Tech Partnering Conference 2015

bitstars innovation meets big partners at the High-Tech Partnering Conference

6th High-Tech Partnering Conference in Bonn, Feb. 4th, 2015

On Wednesday, bitstars CEO Mostafa Akbari and CTO Simon Heinen attended the High-Tech Partnering Conference in Bonn presenting the start-up and connecting with major corporations at the 1-to-1 meetings such as Samsung Gear and Sony.

 

Mostafa Akbari at the Cross Border Innovation Conference 2015

bitstars‘ CEO, Mostafa Akbari, at the High-Tech Partnering Conference 2015 (Photo: © High-Tech Gründerfonds Management GmbH)

The High-Tech Partnering Conference is hosted by the High-Tech Gruenderfonds (HTGF) to initiate exchange between innovative high-tech start-ups and major corporations. The conference was held under the motto „Corss Border Innovation“. To intensify a direct exchange and to lay the foundations for successful co-operations the HTGF, for the first time, organized 1-to-1 meetings between the big and the small. In total 12 pitches where held by the few chosen high-tech companies to present their business concept.

bitstars joined the expert rounds discussing the current topics in ‘SaaS vs. on-promise’ and ‘AR & VR in industrial environments’ with specialists and representatives from industry and commerce, presenting and promoting bitstars‘ innovative products.

All in all, the High-Tech Partnering Conference was a successful and enriching event for bitstars, expanding the list of contacts as well as giving new insights into the imaginative ideas of other start-ups.

 

 

For more informations about the High-Tech Partnering Conference 2015 go to the HTGF website.