When Harry Potter and friends walk to the Common Room in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, the paintings come to life. They talk, walk, laugh, emote and even dance. Now, imagine pointing your phone to a photograph on your wall or your desk, and the same happens. That’s the future of social media. Or at least that’s what the Bengaluru-based startup Flam would have us believe.
“Flam brings photographs and the story behind them to life, to give an immersive experience,” says Shourya Agarwal, CEO and founder of the augmented reality app. Just like you scan a QR code and it takes you to a website where you can order food in a restaurant, the app allows you to watch a video with a photograph.
How different is this video from what we watch on social media apps or WhatsApp? Agarwal says the videos we watch currently are two-dimensional. “Flam lets you experience it in three dimensions, thus adding more depth and immersion to what we watch. We call it the experience of the metaverse, the coming together of the physical and virtual universe. Think Epic Games or Minecraft. Flam enables global audiences to create and consume user-generated AR content, which caters to the phygital (physical-digital) world and aims at building a global social network.”
You can see a video of a flower and butterflies in 2D. Now imagine watching the same in 3D. “Flam gives that experience,” he says. He also believes that the current lipsync videos that social media apps allow people to make will look tame compared to the 3D videos. Metaverse experience should be natural, with physical reality meeting digital reality on your phone, he adds.
“In five months, we have had 50,000 content creators join us and this is going to change content consumption forever. With that comes adoption leading to a big network,” he envisions. Interestingly, they plan to sell Flam cards in supermarkets such as Walgreens in the US. The company has recorded 40 million FlamCard scans within three months of its launch.
How it works:
1) Download Flam app on the Play Store
2) Upload your original 2D video, select the photo frame you want your recipient to receive and send them your address
3) The photograph is printed and along with a Flam card (cost `419) sent to the receiver’s address
4) Once they receive it, they point the app to the photograph that is glued to a wall or a desk etc
5) The photo then turns into a 3D video
Features on Flam
1) Flam Rewards (gamifying AR camera scans)
2) FlamStories (change video on FlamCards)
3) FlamGhost (a hidden photo/video on a blank FlamCard only visible to the recipient)
4) Flam 3D filters and privacy controls