The Helsinki, Finland-based company makes it a lot easier for dispersed teams of engineers and product designers to work on the same project without having to be tethered to a powerful workstation computer.
The process is fairly simple. The user installs Composit and uploads a project with a single click. The file is then viewable instantly on any piece of hardware in real time. Composit is a fully automated, cloud-based solution that allows you to load complex engineering and product design images and view them on devices such as mixed reality headsets.
“We’ve taken our graphics optimization technology and put it in the cloud,” said Shawn Adamek, chief marketing officer at Umbra, in an interview with VentureBeat. “It allows anybody with a complex model to put the assets in the Umbra cloud and optimize it so it can be viewed on any device. This enables you on the marketing and sales side to show your customers your work at any time.”
Umbra was founded in 2007, and it has used its expertise to create 3D optimization for real-time Triple-A game publishers whose content runs at 60 frames per second. Now the company has turned that technology to work with complex 3D models.
The company is showing the technology this week at the Digital Construction Week event in London.
Composit works alongside popular authoring tools such as Autodesk Revit. Once installed, Composit makes it possible for users to “umbrafy” — automatically optimize complex 3D models with a single click — projects from their Revit 3D View instantly. The umbrafied content is then pushed to Umbra’s cloud, where it can be shared to virtually any internet-connected device with a web browser.
Umbra works with a growing number of VR and AR platforms including Microsoft HoloLens, Apple ARKit, and Samsung Gear VR. This makes it possible for large, geographically dispersed teams of varying technical expertise to review renderings in real time, greatly accelerating the design review process. You can take a model with 70 million polygons and view it on a Microsoft HoloLens headset.
Adamek said that the tech enables architects and designers to accelerate revision cycles with colleagues, clients, and other stakeholders. Composit makes it easy to resolve design conflicts and reach consensus on time and on budget.
“It’s a huge pain point for an architect when they have a 50-million polygon model and the plumbing guy comes in and says I have to rewire some of the plumbing,” Adamek said. “It may take 12 hours to re-render the image. Umbra takes care of it in minutes in many cases.”
The company has about 27 employees. Composit is available now for $239 per month. Volume discounts are available for customers interested in seat license bundles.