We’ve written about 8th Wall several times since they came out of stealth in February 2016 with a cross platform AR development platform. The company has powered WebAR activations for brands such as Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man, Miller Lite, British Gas, Heineken, Swiss Airlines, Porsche, Red Bull, Time Magazine, LEGO and Ally + MONOPOLY. 8th Wall’s in-browser AR experiences require no app downloads, removing the friction for users and thereby dependably boosting engagement.
AR Insider estimates that WebAR has the ability to reach nearly twice as many smartphones as native AR apps, with a global market of over 2.97 billion compatible devices. And, according to 8th Wall data, 50% of users spend greater than 2 minutes interacting within a single WebAR activation.
Today, 8th Wall is launching its authoring and hosting platform, an end-to-end cloud solution to create, collaborate and publish WebAR content. Prior to this product release, to use 8th Wall’s SLAM and marker-based AR Engine, developers were required to use third party software to code and provide a hosted environment to develop, test and launch projects.
“This opens the floodgates for developers and is a critical milestone in the development of WebAR,” said founder and CEO Erik Murphy-Chutorian in an interview before the launch. He described the release as “dramatically streamlining the process to create WebAR.” Murphy-Chutorian emphasized that 8th Wall is a professional tool for developers that is optimized for remote team collaboration. “8th Wall’s new platform supports complex, large scope projects built with tools that make it simple,” he said.
The platform has already proven to be valuable according to early access partner 72andSunny, which used 8th Wall’s new tools to publish a WebAR activation for Italian lingerie brand Intimissimi.
“Any product that allows us to both collaborate and manage teams working in different time zones and locations is a plus for us. We deliver global campaigns for our clients from Amsterdam, so 8th Wall’s platform was the perfect solution for this project,” said Benny Everitt, Creative Director, 72andSunny Amsterdam. “The fact that the platform integrated both a hosting environment and a code editor tool made our job so much easier and was fundamental to both the success of our WebAR campaign and to maximize our final output.”
8th Wall’s investors include Norwest Venture Partners, VR Fund, Betaworks, SV Angel, Shasta Ventures, Greylock, and Sparkland Capital.