Why fly-throughs are yesterday’s technology

A TV producer recently said to me, “I’m assuming you’ve got a fly-through so can you send that on to us.” The answer of course, was yes.

Fly-throughs, which were new in the early 2000s, are great at visualising built projects. They help us see a 3D render and allow us to fly through streetscapes like we’re watching a movie.

But that’s all we’re doing. We’re watching.

Say goodbye to fly-throughs!

Skip forward 15 years from the advent of fly-throughs, and there’s so many other ways to engage the community on future projects. Here are some of the best:

1. Fake tattoos using augmented reality

Imagine using your mobile phone to scan a fake tattoo on your arm and then looking through the camera to “see” the blood coursing through your veins, with all the molecules magnified and visible.

2. Marker cards using 3D augmented reality

A handful of cutting edge councils and developers are printing 2D post cards of their built-form projects that, when seen through your smartphone or tablet, appear to pop up and out of the card in 3D.

The difference between this and a fly-through is the user can take control and see all 360 degrees of the built form.

3. Immersive panoramas

This is like being inside a scene and being able to control where you walk and what you look at. You’re not at the mercy of where the fly through takes you.

4. Gamification

The private retail sector has been the leader here. But construction companies, telcos and the health sector are all developing online and offline games to engage people for education, training or for brand loyalty.

5. 3D printing

We don’t have one … yet. But 3D printers make it easier to produce models that everyone can have at home, examine, even play with!

Are you ready to move on from fly-throughs?

How would you use today’s technology in your project?