AUSTRALIA'S first affordable, high-resolution and immediate way of virtually being there has been launched in Gympie.
Century 21 real estate principal Bill Mitchell said he was delighted with the new technology, which enabled people to engage in a realistic virtual tour of properties on the market.
Faster and better than Google Earth, cheaper than Star Wars and not reliant on computer-generated "drawings," the 360-degree camera technology has been developed by Gympie multimedia guru Luke Soanes.
Mr Soanes said similar technology was in use overseas, but said information was understandably hard to come by.
"There is very little information or training anywhere online or within Australia," he said.
"I've had to develop new film-making techniques and design a customised post-production editing process."
Mr Soanes said Mr Mitchell was his first real estate client to adopt the technology.
And Mr Mitchell said it was a tremendous aid to marketing real estate, because it helped buyers with their research.
"People do a lot of homework when they buy property these days and this helps them do that.
"It's great to work with Luke. He's a leader in his field.
"This is the way of the future," he said.
Mr Soanes said 360-degree video was "the next best thing to being there".
"It is a video where the user can see everything around the camera," he said.
"You can turn around and see the whole room as it really is.
"There are no limits. It can be played on hand-held devices, desktop computers or virtual-reality headsets."
Mr Soanes planned to use it the technology to make music videos, where the viewer could "look" at anyone in the band, or at the audience.
"I knew the second I had this technology we would be in the front of the pack," he said.