Challenge

Historic Museum of Krakow had incredible 3D models of medieval Krakow made in Sketchup that were used for presentations in the halls on tv screens. The tricky part was how to translate it to tourist mobile devices and bring it outside the walls of the museum building for a larger audience. In 2014 mobile devices were not so powerful and we also had a question of optimization.

Solution

Project with the Museum received direct SME Instrument funding for the feasibility study from the European Comission, marking it a first project in Poland to receive this prestigious grant. We have built the prototype app in Unreal Engine visualising full 3D scenes with the accelerometer, compass and gps making sure that the visuals match the real surroundings behind the tablet. Tourists were invited by the Museum in two spots by rollup ads to download the app on their mobile devices (android). Museum also forwarded some social media posts about the app. 3D content was rebuilt to low poly with nice textures. The whole market square was meticulously recreated making sure that even the stone floor texture matched the stones used in the XV century Krakow.

2000

downloads / month

50

media mentions

3

awards

Results

Despite the fact that the app had steep hardware requirements for it’s time (2016) we have registered 2000 downloads from the users visiting the square in nearly a month based on two rollups and limited social media activity. Prototype proved that it was not commercially viable to charge users for the app download. Yet users wanted to see the reconstructed scene up to a point where they downloaded nearly 300 megabytes of data. It also received over 50 media mentions. Project received Galileo Masters award for the innovative use of GPS signal and was invited to participate in the Finnish accelerator Creatifi based in Helsinki. It also received much interest from tourist service providers (agencies, restaurants, guides) that were that were limited in advertising their services in the strict heritage spaces. Pokemon Go that was released in the same period proved that such apps should be based on map, much lighter, with points of interest yet it failed to deliver valuable guests to tourist services.

2019 update – we’re working on the new version of the app based on the experiences from 2016.

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Mariusz GadHead of Marketing at the Historic Museum of Krakow