In 2019, YouTube reported that it had crossed 2 billion monthly users - that is, one in four people worldwide access YouTube every month. This once unfathomable number actually even undercounts how much time we spend enjoying content online. From Twitch streamers to Instagram influencers and even TikTok stars, more and more individuals are now able to reach out to fans and engage with them across platforms.
Yet the expanding audience for digital content creates a persistent issue for creators. The audience online may be massive, but so is the competition. Expanding one’s online profile doesn’t just mean taking part in the latest viral trends. To gain a strong foothold for the future, influencers and content creators have to be at the forefront of the next generation of digital media.
3D scanning’s rising popularity and ease-of-use, compared to even just a few years ago, has made it a viable testing ground for innovative influence. Let’s take a peek into the near-future of 3D scanning in keeping us connected online via AR & VR.
From 2D to 3D Online
We’ve come a long way since the early days of social media. It seems almost quaint to think back to Web 1.0’s social media, uploading pictures from an SD card to put them on Myspace for anyone with a computer to see. Now, the entire content creation process - from image and video capturing to editing and upload - can be done entirely from one’s cell phone. No extra equipment or cables required.
While the way we create content has advanced, the final product itself is more or less the same as ever. We have 4K videos and dozens of image filters, but the content at its core is nearly identical to early social media: Videos, images, and text for users to browse and view.
It’s important to remember that while viral videos existed prior to 2005, the rise of YouTube is what created video influencers. By having the widely-known platform and easy-to-use tools needed to create, upload, and edit videos, YouTube became a media empire within a few years. Similarly, while Myspace and Facebook allowed anyone to gain a sizable following online through content, the term “influencer” is almost synonymous with Instagram. The right online tools and platforms are what create online communities.
3D will be the next step in this continuous evolution, thanks to advancements in consumer technology. The same iPhone a content creator uses for their YouTube, Instagram, or Twitch feed can now provide 3D content as well - creating a new opportunity for the avant-garde influencer.
Engagement in The VR Space
With Scandy Pro, influencers can create AR media of products and images they scan through the app. These 3D creations act as a novel way to share content, going beyond the standard image or video upload to stand out from the thousands of other creators competing for online attention.
What’s more, followers need not solely view these uploads - they can engage with them as well. If the influencer uploads the file in STL format, their fans can download and modify the content themselves, creating an excellent engagement opportunity not possible with previous forms of media. While it remains to be seen what platform will arise to allow for these kinds of uploads, the 3D-content equivalent to YouTube and Instagram can have a wider, more in-depth reach than our current media platforms.
3D files are only the beginning. The real game-changer comes when a 4D AR video can be produced with inexpensive tools, allowing social media stars the opportunity to take themselves places that were unreachable prior. The types of AR and VR environments they can insert themselves into are limitless - all it takes is the right background and the necessary tools.
Our hoxel app does just that, and is currently in the beta testing stage. Check it out if you’re interested in what the AR future of content could look like.
In the meantime, savvy influencers know that staying on top of long-term trends is key to growing their subscriber count and engagement online. With the level of 3D and 4D scanning tech available today, that future is coming faster than some might expect, and will change the very nature of how we interact with one another online.
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