Google has instructed users to download their personal libraries before June 30, 2021.
VR content creators woke up today with a shocking email from Google stating that the company would be shutting down their 3D model sharing platform Google Poly. For VR creators like Rosie Summers, Poly has been instrumental in her amazing Tilt Brush work.
The email says that Google will be shutting down Poly on June 30th, 2021 and will be ending the ability to upload 3D models to the platform beginning April 30, 2021. Users of Poly are being told that they should download their entire 3D library before the shutdown date. If you don’t, it’s possible you may lose all of your work.
In a recent tweet, Summers posted the email she received from Google, stating, “This is SO BAD. I rely on this platform SO much with my work, it’s a vital way of sharing vr to clients and friends who don’t have a HMD!!”
Google Poly launched back in November of 2017 and was quickly embraced by VR content creators, game developers, educators, students, and artists all around the world as a way to share 3D artwork. Poly also offers a huge library featuring thousands of free 3D objects that could be downloaded and used for various VR and AR applications.
“Poly closing impacts me so so much,” said Summers while speaking to VRScout. “Poly is more than just a platform, even though the only social element is a ‘like’ button, it feels like a community. Just scrolling and being inspired by hundreds of tilt brush paintings, from hundreds of talented artists…. It’s a special place and I’m heartbroken with the news. I use Poly the most for sharing my work, either with clients or to the community to explore. Not every client I work with has a headset so it’s a great way to share iterations quickly and easily. For fast prototyping, it has been essential for pulling assets into game engines nice and fast, I know this technique has been vital for shows in the Wave too.”
“No other platform offers the level of integration with tilt brush assets that Poly does, so it’s going to really hinder my work pipeline,” she continues, “With only 6 months notice it’s also very difficult with projects I currently have in the works. Feeling very desperate and hunting hard for an alternative. I use Poly as a way to also engage with the community, I have over 100 Poly uploads and love creating interactive pieces such as an egg hunt and advent calendar in tilt brush, it’s something I really enjoy doing and it’s something I will deeply miss doing.”
It’s no secret that Google has been slowly moving away from VR over the past year. In 2019 the company ended its cloud-based 360 stitching program, Jump. Shortly after they announced that their Pixel 4 smartphone would no longer support VR, thus marking the end of the Google Daydream platform. Most recently, the tech giant announced that they would be shutting down their Google VR field trip app, Expeditions, a tool used by many educators to help transport their students to places around the world from the comfort and convenience of the classroom.
That being said, Google hasn’t completely abandoned VR or AR just yet. Google Maps uses AR technology to enhance its GPS navigation via a real-time heads-up display; meanwhile YouTube still offers plenty of VR videos for you to check out.
Image Credit: Google