Observer Analytics Debuts Tool to Evaluate VR, AR Content

Observer Analytics unveiled its platform for quantifying virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality, to create key performance indicators (KPIs) for the industry. The platform was built from scratch to analyze the new and complex forms of engagement found in this immersive content, with the end goal of making it easier for developers to understand how users interact with their content. To create the platform, the company has raised $685,000, including a pre-seed round from Boost VC and Precursor Ventures.

VentureBeat reports that, according to Observer Analytics chief executive Lucas Toohey, “VR and AR technologies present a fundamental change as users interact with free-form, non-linear 3D content, versus traditional 2D screens.”

“As a result, developers face new challenges in effectively capturing user data and deriving insights to help inform product decisions and roadmaps,” he said. “Observer Analytics bridges the gap by empowering VR and AR creators to easily track and analyze this new category of interactions.” The company is already working with FitXR, Alvios Games (“QuiVr” publisher), Flipside XR, and Moment.

Former VR developers created the platform, which supports Unity and Unreal Engine, to use when building their first app in 2016.

“When our team was developing our own social VR application in 2016, we continued to struggle with not knowing how users spent their time in our experience,” said Toohey, who added that the company plans to add support for WebXR. “Because designing for three dimensions is a new frontier, our design and development decisions were rooted in assumption, and we simply hoped that our design was intuitive. However, our usage and retention metrics said otherwise. We’re hoping to eliminate the guesswork for all VR and AR creators.”

VB says that Observer’s “drag-and-drop software development kits simplify the integration process and instantly track dozens of metrics out of the box, mitigating the need to manually track the metrics developers care most about.” The web-based dashboard makes it easy, it adds, to “analyze metrics such traction, retention, engagement, and physical interactions to better understand how their audience is engaging with the experience.”

Observer Analytics offers a free version and a paid one, the latter accessible as software-as-a-service. “With the lack of standards in the VR and AR space, developing for these new technologies is like the Wild West,” said Toohey. “Our goal is to help push the VR and AR industry forward by helping content creators achieve their goals of building and launching more intuitive and immersive experiences. We hope to create industry standards based off of data to accelerate the iterative design and development process for future creators.”