We've all been there. Your manager or customer has been looking at 3D images of your latest product design for months on your computer. But when the first prototype is put on the table in front of them, they say something like "Are you sure that's the right size, because it looked smaller on the computer screen." And since you're on the verge of releasing the design to tooling, you mentally scramble to figure out a way to avoid redoing several weeks worth of work.
How does this happen? You've been sharing the design with them the entire time. So how could they perceive it so differently?
When you think about it, whether you're designing a watch or a motorcycle, everything ends up being the same size on your computer screen. We zoom-to-fit to maximize our work space, and there is usually no visual reference on the screen to help us correctly perceive size. So we're not certain of a product's actual size until we have a physical model that we can compare to other objects in the real world.
Wouldn't it be great if you could take your design and put a virtual model of it on the table right next to you in the room? That way you could then look at it next to real products, slide and spin it around on the table, and get a complete sense of the product's true size, scale, and proportions. And what if you could do this at any time in the design process, and as often as you like?
Well, now you can do just that! We have enhanced eDrawings for iOS to now include Augmented Reality (AR). I will let the two videos below do most of the talking, but here are a few noteworthy points:
- AR is available in both the Standard and Professional versions of eDrawings for iPad and iPhone
- It lets everyone on the design team see your product at full scale so its true size is obvious to everyone. Customers who have previewed this have told us that this will be a great sales tool when promoting their own products to their customers
- You can use Configurations to load an entire product line in eDrawings, and then use AR to place any specific product variation on the table in front of your customer
I came across a real Holmatro spreader in the Partner Pavilion at SolidWorks World 2013 in Orlando. It turns out we are using that product as one of our eDrawings sample files.
eDrawings for iOS with Augmented Reality is now available in the Apple App Store. If you previously purchased eDrawings for your iOS device, just update it in iTunes to get this new capability.