Panoramic Photography on the iPad
You've seen panoramic photography on real estate websites, Google Street View, and your own iPhone. Now it's coming to your iPad, infused with hotspots, audio, video, 3D renderings and other media that make the best storytelling device ever made even more effective.
Our new iPad app, an interactive tour of our church-turned-studio called The People in the Steeple, showcases panoramic photography as a way to deliver content that lets users experience it rather than simply reading and looking. We developed the app using a combination of Adobe Digital Publishing Suite and custom HTML programming. It's free, and available here. (You can experience a version of it online here, too.)
Users move from one room to the next in search of the source of the loud snoring that greets them as they enter. Along the way they encounter JZD staff, with the ability to tap each person to hear their innermost thoughts. By embedding the content within the app, we've been able to deliver robust imagery and audio, as there's no need to download anything from the web. Even better, the user can swipe images to move around a room, or simply lift their device and let the gyroscope do the driving.
Here are a few images from the app . . .
We won't spoil the surprise ending. But know this: it's the most fun you can have in a church . . . in an iPad app . . . in Montclair, New Jersey! Seriously though, it's a magical way to experience content on the iPad, and it's only the beginning. We've used panoramic photographs in our apps since 2011, starting with The Final Hours of Portal 2, but over the years the technology has gotten better and better:
The next edition of Kids Discover, a children's magazine we design and develop for the iPad, contains a 3D-rendered panorama of the Parthenon. Fast Company's next issue lets users peruse its cover subject's private offices. And The Final Hours of Tomb Raider has three panoramas inside — two showing Crystal Dynamics' studios in California and one that puts the user inside one of the virtual island environments from the video game.
Here are examples of how panoramic photography can be used to take people inside our favorite local deli — be sure to tap on the menu on the counter. Or even something conceptual, like a typographic environment or a busy intersection in Montclair, NJ, where something seems to have gone awry.
We see panos as a way for iPad users to "tour" museums located halfway around the world, moving from one room to the next and tapping on any exhibit for more information. These same apps can help those who are physically present in those museums, replacing audio tours with something more responsive. And there's no reason these same experiences couldn't translate to virtual retail stores, e-learning applications, educational content, tourism guides, architectural renderings, games and much more.
It's pano-demonium, for sure! Download The People in the Steeple and experience it for yourself.