Industry/sector: Virtual reality
Date founded: 2014
Founder: Darren Jobling
Location: Tyne and Wear
ZeroLight started as an incubated division of Eutechnyx, a racing game developer of 25 years, in 2012 – and in 2014 was established as a separate company. The founding team are real-time 3D and visualisation technology experts with a background in the games industry. Among the founding team is CEO Darren Jobling, whose management of creative studios and international business development experience has provided the focus and strategic innovation required to disrupt the automotive and retail industry.
ZeroLight virtual showrooms are changing the way that complex products such as cars are sold. They allow OEMs and retailers to showcase virtual versions of their complete model range with all variations and options in stunning graphical quality and with a rich feature set. Using UltraHD screens and virtual reality headsets they give sales staff and customers the ability to virtually experience any configuration of cars or products.
“ZeroLight-powered VR experiences combine objective-orientated design with low latency, high resolution, and high frame rate plus intuitive UI to make it user friendly,” said Jason Collins, senior marketing manager at ZeroLight.
“One of our first VR experiences, an airline cabin demo, has been created to help show the potential of VR technology in industries that design and make interior spaces. Airlines are a classic example because (especially in first-class) their use of space is innovative and needs to combine aesthetics with the commercial reality of getting as many seats as possible into the space. Other similar industries would include trains, interior design, office and working-space design, restaurant and retail planning.
“We then created a companion control system that can be run on a tablet or a PC, which is used to move the user on to the next stage of the cabin tour,” Collins explained. “This is a single mouse click which takes the user to each stop on the tour, one after another. This is an example of a ‘guided tour’ approach to a VR experience which guides the user round the important elements and features, as opposed to a free roam approach.”
By creating the world’s first viable real-time 3D virtual showroom solution ZeroLight has created a new vertical in which it is the world leader – commercial real-time 3D applications.
“When designing commercial or retail applications, it’s important to be aware the product likely already does a great job of selling itself,” said executive producer Doug Wolff. “So it’s key to understand what the use of VR is bringing to the experience. We recommend identifying which parts of the customer journey need to be real, and which enhanced by VR – we call this our ‘reality check’.”