Release Notes for Avatour

Latest Release Highlights - 

Date: July 13th, 2022

AVATOUR for Android and Pilot 

  • The in-session menu options of the Operator App have been redesigned to improve usability. Buttons are now larger and the Mute All option has been added to the main menu. Chat has now been given its own screen which can be accessed by swiping between the different views. A chat notification will appear at the top of the UI when a message is received. Clicking on the notification will bring the operator directly to the Chat view. An update for iOS will be released later this month.
  • The new Spotlight tool enables remote users (using a web browser or virtual reality headset) to highlight a portion of the 360° environment, allowing session participants to “point” and call attention to an area of interest. The on-site camera operator will see the highlighted portion of the 360° environment on their device screen (Pilot camera or mobile device) as well as a preview of the entire 360° environment with an indicator marking the area of interest.
  • Bug fixes
    • Fixed garbled characters in the session list when Japanese language was selected
    • Fixed some missing Japanese translations

AVATOUR Web / Console 

  • Spotlight  
    • The new Spotlight tool enables remote users (using a web browser or virtual reality headset) to highlight a portion of the 360° environment, allowing session participants to “point” and call attention to an area of interest. Other remote users will see the highlighted area to the side of their screen and can click on it to automatically rotate to the area of interest. The on-site camera operator will see the highlighted portion of the 360° environment on their device screen (Pilot camera or mobile device) as well as a preview of the entire 360° environment with an indicator marking the area of interest.
  • Lock Focus 
    • A new submenu called Host Tools will be available for session Hosts joining from desktop. The first Host tool being introduced is Lock Focus which allows the Host to lock the view of the other web guests. As the Host rotates around the 360° view, the other guests’ views will automatically be rotated to match that of the Host, allowing the Host to direct everyone’s attention to a specific part of the view.
  • Improved List View for Assets 
    • The in-session Asset window list view has been updated to show asset thumbnails and indicates which Snapshots contain Notes.
  • Onboarding Tutorial in Japanese (web)
    • A Japanese version of the in-session tutorial and Avatour Console tutorial are now available for web users.

AVATOUR VR Client for Quest and Pico

  • Spotlight tool
    • The new Spotlight tool enables remote users in a virtual reality headset to highlight a portion of the 360° environment, allowing session participants to “point” and call attention to an area of interest. Other remote users will see the highlighted area to the side of their screen and can click on it to automatically rotate to the area of interest.
  • Bug fixes
    • Fixed garbled japanese translation 
    • Japanese UI formatting issues 
    • Snapshots taken in VR while using japanese language don't show in the asset library
    • Mic status is incorrectly displayed for guests joining from a VR headset

Earlier Releases

AVATOUR Web Client Release Notes

Date: June 16th, 2022

  • Turn off camera when web guest exits the session
  • Display positive feedback in analytics
  • Update icons and text for in session controls to match VR client

Date: June 9th, 2022

  • Device management
    • Devices can now be registered to your organization, rather than specific Host accounts. The licenses tab now shows detailed information about each registered device, the last person to use it, and when it was last used.
  • Integrated Tutorials & Tips
    • Users will now have the option of receiving helpful tips when first joining a session or logging in to the Avatour Console.

Date: May 25, 2022

  • Hot fix : Fixed issue that prevented using upper case text or symbols in chat.

Date: May 24, 2022

  • Hot fix : Fixed from May 17th broke 2D and 360 snapshot capture.
  • Fixed an issue displaying new sessions in console when number of sessions exceeds 150.
  • Display event notifications (poor bandwidth at remote site, low battery level etc) during a session

Date: May 17, 2022

  • Fixed rendering issues that caused vertical lines in the 360 degree video to appear wavy. 

Date: May 12, 2022

  • Display bitrate charts within session analytics.  Line graphs show the capture stream bitrate vs quality of stream received by each of the participants. This data is useful to understand reasons for poor session quality - if due to poor uplink at the remote site or a result of insufficient downlink speeds at the guest location. When the guest has poor downlink, they receive a lower quality transcoded video feed.
  • Support uploading image assets at up to 8192x4096 resolution. 

Date: May 02, 2022

  • Fix a bug where joining a session as spectator from an iOS device displays a frozen image
  • Web displays warnings when 360 camera bitrate or guest bandwidth drops. Added a debug option to the menu to display bitrate statistics.

Date: Apr 20th, 2022. 

  • Spectator Mode (Enterprise customers only) (Beta)
    • Hosts now have a session setting for enabling Spectator Mode. When activated, the session is assigned a Spectator Code which allows users to join a session as Spectators via a web browser (this mode will be available to VR users in a future release). Spectators can see and hear all of the full participants, interact with the 360° environment, view any assets or cameras that are presented, and communicate via chat. Spectators do not provide audio or video and cannot present. Sessions with Spectator Mode enabled now have a limit of 30 total users, with a maximum of 20 full participants.
  • Avatour System Status Page
    • Users can now visit avatour.live/status to view the status of the Avatour platform and its major components. If users are experiencing technical issues they can check this page for information before reaching out to support.
  • iOS Bluetooth Fixes
    • A major bug has been fixed in iOS that caused Bluetooth audio devices to sound crackly or distorted when joining a session on an iOS device.
CONSOLE:
  • Session Events with Asset Details in Analytics
    • There is a list of session events available when viewing analytics for a single session. Any event which involved the use or creation of an asset now shows a thumbnail of that asset with a link to immediately view the asset’s details.
  • Device Information in Analytics
    • Information about the 360° capture device is now shown in the analytics for a session. This includes device model, software version, serial number, and location of the capture (displayed as City and Country when available).
  • Total Session Minutes in Analytics
    • The Analytics home page now shows the total number of session minutes for all host accounts within your organization, or for a single selected host.
  • Joining a Session When Logged In to Console
    • If a user is logged into their Avatour account in a web browser, joining a session from a new tab will automatically fill in their name.
  • Account Admin Can Reset Passwords (Enterprise customers only)
    • Account administrators can now reset the password for other users within their organization. Useful when someone is having difficulty logging in or for restricting access to an account.
  • Japanese Support for Password Reset
    • The password reset process is now available in Japanese.
  • Detailed User Feedback
    • If users experienced issues during a session and provide a negative rating (thumbs down) they are now presented with a list of feedback options to provide more detail regarding what went wrong during the session. These details can be viewed in Analytics when provided.
  • Clickable links in chat.

Date: Mar 16th, 2022. 

  • Account administrator can reset password for users in the organization
  • Fixed iOS bug where bluetooth audio is crackly and distorted. 
  • Minor updates to Analytics on web. We now display location of participants when location access is allowed by guests joining the session. We present links to assets shared during a session. 

Date : Mar 3rd, 2022.

  • Users are no longer required to mute when assets are playing. Implemented loopback echo cancellation of asset audio.
  • Analytics tab within the web dashboard shows usage of the platform and a detail view that shows participants and timeline of events (join/ leave, assets presented, desktop / camera shared) within a session.
  • Enterprise customers can request a URL (companyXYZ.avatour.live) and customize the experience for their guests by adding company branding, logo and background image. You need to be an account administrator to access customization features.
  • Password reset : Users can now reset their password by clicking “Forgot Password” on the login screen. They will receive an email with a link to change their password.

Date: Feb 01, 2022

  • Improved Participant List

Web users will now see VR participants in their Participant List as a high-quality 2D rendering. Not only does this look nice, it improves the performance of the web app.

We’ve also made the participant list expandable. Now users will see webcam views for the most active participants while more idle participants are shown in a list view, making it easier to see who is in the session. Speaking will move an idle participant into the active participant section.

  • New Analytics page in the Avatour Console 

Hosts and Admins can now access session data via the new Analytics page in the Avatour Console.

The Analytics landing page shows aggregated data across sessions with the ability to click into single sessions for more details. Data collection for sessions will begin February 1st, and we will continue to expand on this functionality in the next release.

Date: Jan 4th, 2022

  • Uploading multiple assets at once from the dashboard. Uploads are queued up and can be cancelled at anytime.  Transfer is automatically resumed if you upload the same file after accidentally closing the browser tab or window.

Date: Dec 28th, 2021

  • Bug fixes 

Date: Dec 23rd, 2021

Bug fixes

  • Host 'Mute All' is not enforced for guests that join after. 
  • Fix labels that represent note positions in the exported pdf
  • Other bug fixes
Date: Dec 3rd, 2021
  • New Administrator Role
    • Avatour now supports a new user role: Administrator. Admins have direct access to new Settings and Licenses pages within the Avatour Console for convenient control of session settings, users, and devices. One existing Host license will be upgraded to Admin for all Enterprise-tier Avatour customers, at no additional charge.  Please contact your customer success manager to nominate the account that should have admin privileges. 
  • Admin Settings Page
    • Admins can adjust universal settings that apply to all sessions across their organization, promoting security through proper usage of assets and the Avatour platform.
  • Admin Licenses Page
    • Admins now have direct control over both Host and Device Licenses. Hosts and devices can be activated and deactivated, with the number of available licenses clearly indicated.
  • Transfer or Delete Assets and Sessions
    • When a Host account is deactivated, the deactivated Host’s sessions and assets can be transferred to the Admin account or simply deleted.
  • Exit Session Confirmation
    • Users on the web will now see a confirmation screen after clicking the Exit button, ensuring no one abruptly leaves a session by accidentally clicking Exit.
  • Session Codes in Session List
    • The list of sessions in the Avatour Console now displays Session Codes below the Session Names, making it easier to quickly find the right session.
  • Collection of Location Information
    • Location information is now collected for session participants and capture devices. This data will be used in future releases to allow Hosts and Admins to locate capture devices and view statistics on cost savings, time savings, and carbon footprint reduction. Avatour will never share customer data with other customers or any organization outside of Avatour. Read more in our Privacy Policy. 
  • Export snapshots and associated notes to pdf format.
    • A host user can export snapshots and any notes pinned to locations within the snapshot to pdf format from their Asset Library. 
Bug Fixes: 
  • Fixed a bug where the menu would not display correctly when viewing the Avatour Console on a mobile device. 
  • Fixed a bug where cancelling an asset upload would disable the ability to upload more assets.
  • Fixed a bug that prevented jpeg files from uploading properly during a session.

Date: Nov 14, 2021 

Bug fixes:
  • Fix issue with invitation link that is copied to clipboard 
  • Fix bug that prevented mobile web user from taking a 'Superfreeze'
  • Clicking hide camera on iOS 15 kicks user out of the session.

Date: Nov 7, 2021 

  • Warn guests to mute or use headphones when sharing video assets
  • Improved time to join a session
  • Fix UX issues on iPad
  • Restrict asset upload to supported file types (png, jpg, jpeg, mp4, mkv)

Date: Oct 26, 2021

  • Improve notes functionality
  • Prevent shuffling of participants when active speaker changes
  • Bug fixes

Date: Oct 17, 2021

  • Adding notes in a session or from the library
  • Display "You are muted" tooltip when the participant is speaking while muted.
  • Move "Join Session" button to the top to increase visibility (without having to scroll).
  • Single session type. 
    • We no longer make a distinction between live and pre-recorded during session creation.
      Any session can include a live stream or pre-recorded assets or both.
    • Assets are displayed in a pop-up when there is no live stream and participant has access rights.
    • Revisit the session at anytime to review snapshots and notes captured during the session.
    • Host can additionally access or download assets from the library.
  • Copy / share invitation link from within a session (under settings)
  • Added "other" section for comments or feedback at the end of the session
  • Revert displaying guest avatars for VR clients
  • Bug fixes

Date: Sept 23, 2021

  • Japanese language support can be enabled from your account profile or in-session settings
  • Fixed bug where guest audio cannot be heard when they don't send video
  • Highlight active/ or dominant speaker 
  • Give host permissions to close assets shared by other guests 
  • Other bug fixes

Date: Sept 5, 2021

  • Take snapshots of a secondary camera feed (make a digital copy of a document shared using a document camera or a detailed view shared using a smartphone camera)
  • Add notes to your snapshots. You can pin notes to specific locations in a 2D or 360 snapshot to capture audit findings or identify areas for further clarification.
  • Camera & Mic Source Settings. Users can now manually select between camera and mic sources from the settings menu during a session.  

Date: Aug 7, 2021

  • Take 2D and 360 Snapshots during a session. Snapshots get saved as assets and can be accessed from the library.  Access to snapshots is available only if host allows the guests access to session assets. 
  • Resize or Fullscreen view of the asset window 
  • Display timestamps for chat messages

Date: July 27, 2021

  • Drag, resize, maximize shared camera or desktop modal
  • Improve quality of secondary camera and screen share
  • Improved Guest POVs by adding display name, offscreen indicators, click to reset view to that of the guest
  • Full screen playback of assets in the library (Player is accessed from the Session Detail Modal)
  • Added session parameter 'Require live stream'. When disabled, participants can use AVATOUR without a live 360 stream (for document sharing or screen sharing, as an example)

      AVATOUR for Pilot One/ Era Release Notes

      Version: 0.5.76

      Date: 6/9/2022

      • Account Login on Pilot Camera 
        • Operators of the Labpano Pilot camera will now be required to log in to their Avatour account in order to access their session list and upload assets from the Pilot gallery. Operators will remain logged in to the app between uses, with the option of logging out. 
      • Direct Upload from Pilot Gallery
        • Offline recordings in the Pilot gallery (created using the native Pilot app) can now be uploaded directly from the Pilot camera to your Avatour Asset Library. Multiple files can be selected for upload and will be added to an upload queue. We recommend connecting the Pilot to power during the upload process as the video files can be quite large.
      • Japanese Localization 
        • Japanese translations have been implemented in the Pilot and Android Operator Apps, with iOS coming in a future release. Language selection is available in the Settings menu.
      • Proxy Support
        • Implemented support for the establishment of connections and delivery of media over HTTP proxy.
      • Bug fixes
        • Fixed application hang when using Superfreeze using Insta One X2.
        • Fixes occasional 360 video feed freezes or application crashes after wifi drop

      Version: 0.5.59

      Date: 5/6/2022

      • Display number of spectators in the session above the list of full participants
      • Display notifications when there are drops in connectivity. Improved reconnection behavior when switching between WI-FI access points.
      • Fixed the occasional issue where host audio cannot be heard after a drop in connectivity.

      Version: 0.5.46

      Date: Feb 01, 2022

      • This updates includes several bug fixes and dramatically improved performance when several participants are present.
      • 2D Avatars for VR guests

      Version: 0.5.41

      Date: Dec 15, 2021

      • Bug fixes
        •  Fixed a major issue that prevents loading of sessions when the app is launched. This issue was introduced by our upstream service provider changing their certificate manager that caused API requests from certain regions to fail during certificate validation. It's critical that customers update to this version by following the instructions within this link.
        • Fix network test

      Version: 0.5.34

      Date: Oct 28, 2021

      • The interface is now divided into multiple views, making it easier to see what's happening in the session. You can now swipe between a view of participants, a larger preview of the 360° stream, and an overview showing the active speaker and a smaller 360° preview.
      • Capture and save high quality 360 photos using SuperFreeze mode. This mode can be initiated by the camera operator (from the host app) or requested by the guests. SuperFreeze captures still photos on the camera and shares it with session participants.

      Version: 0.5.28

      Date: Aug 30, 2021

      • Drop streaming bitrate when asset/ desktop / camera is is being shared to manage bandwidth requirements for guests 
      • Drop streaming bitrate when video is paused 

      Version: 0.5.22 

      Date: Jul 22, 2021

      • Bug fixes

      Version: 0.5.21

      Date: Jul 16, 2021

      • Bug fixes

      Version: 0.5.20

      Date: Jul 12, 2021

      • Updated the device registration hint

      Version: 0.5.19

      Date: Jul 9, 2021

      • Minor bugfixes and improvements

      Version: 0.5.17

      Date: Jun 30, 2021

      • Display host name for each session
      • Disable automatic shut off while running network tests
      • In session UI tweaks

      Version: 0.5.16

      Date: Jun 20, 2021

      • Fix occasional crashes when switching between access points or networks
      • Use CDN to serve assets

      Version: 0.5.12

      Date: May 19, 2021

      • Bug fixes and stability improvements

      Version: 0.5.11 

      Date: May 15, 2021, 12:58 PM

      • Bug fixes and stability improvements

      Version: 0.5.06

      Date: May 2, 2021, 3:36 PM

      • Bug fixes

      Version: 0.5.04

      Date: Apr 28, 2021

      • Fixed occasional stream not starting the second time after changing wifi networks 

      Version : 0.5.02

      Date : Apr 26, 2021

      • Show the current session code
      • Dynamic audio routing for USB-C headsets

      AVATOUR for Google Play Store Release Notes

      Version: 0.5.46 

      Date: Feb 01, 2021

      • This updates includes several bug fixes and dramatically improved performance when several participants are present.
      • 2D Avatars for VR guests

      Version: 0.5.41

      Date: Dec 16, 2021

      • UX Redesign
        • The host interface is now divided into multiple views, making it easier to see what's happening in the session. You can now swipe between a view of participants, a larger preview of the 360° stream, and an overview showing the active speaker and a smaller 360° preview.
      • Performance Improvements
        • Reduce stream delay introduced in capture processing
        • Fix the occasional UI hang during a super freeze
      • Bug fixes
        • Fixed some bugs in chat functionality
        • Stop host stream when sharing a 360 video asset in an effort to limit bandwidth requirements and resource utilization on the guest device (web and VR). Host will be able to communicate through audio when assets are being shared. It may take a few seconds after the 360 asset is closed to restart the host stream.
          Correctly handle host account when multiple roles are assigned
        • Fixed asset uploading on host app
        • Fixed start and end time when creating/editing a session

      Version: 0.5.33

      Date: Oct 26, 2021

      • Capture and save high quality 360 photos using SuperFreeze mode. This mode can be initiated by the camera operator (from the host app) or requested by the guests. 
        SuperFreeze captures still photos on the camera and transfers them into the AVATOUR session. 2d or 360 snapshots taken on the web are screen captures of the live feed and suffer from video compression artifacts due to poor bandwidth. 

      Version: 0.5.28

      Date: Aug 30, 2021

      • Drop streaming bitrate when asset/ desktop / camera is is being shared to manage bandwidth requirements for guests 
      • Drop streaming bitrate when video is paused 

      Version: 0.5.23

      Date: Jul 27, 2021 

      • Additional session settings (Require host)
      • Participant limit extended to 21 (including host)
      • Bug fixes

        Version: 0.5.16

        Date: Jun 20, 2021

        • Fix issues streaming over 5g (ipv6 only) networks
        • Fix occasional crashes when switching between access points or networks
        • Use CDN to serve assets

        Version: 0.5.11

        Date: May 14, 2021
        • Bug fixes and stability improvements

        Version: 0.5.02

        Date: Apr 26, 2021

        • Migrate to the new 2.0 delivery infrastructure. Reduces delay, and improves performance in low bandwidth conditions

        Version: 0.4.22

        Date: Mar 15, 2021

        • Update Android Sdk to API 30 (Android 11)
        • UX improvements

        Version: 0.4.21

        Date: Mar 14, 2021

        • In-session settings allow the host to change bitrate, frame rate without having to end session.

        Version: 0.4.18

        Date: Mar 3, 2021

        • Bug fixes

        Version: 0.4.15

        Date: Feb 24, 2021

        • Display full 360 preview
        • Session parameters allow a host to limit guest access to assets
        • Guests can login to the host app and start sessions that they are invited to
        • Bug fixes

        Version: 0.4.10

        Date: Jan 15, 2021

        • Improved status messages
        • Upload bandwidth reports at the end of the session

        Version: 0.4.6

        Date:  Jan 5, 2021

        • Updated application splash screen
        • Beta access to lower delay pipeline

        Version: 0.4.5

        Date:  Dec 20, 2020

        • OneX camera mic for Pixel 3/4
        • Apply Video mask to restricted field of view
        • Fix crash on some devices based on Exynos and Kirin chipset
        • Updated Insta SDK to v1.3.3

        Version: 0.2.75

        Date:  Dec 11, 2020

        • Support for Insta 360 One X2 and One R cameras
        • Bug fixes

        Version: 0.2.67

        Date: Nov 27, 2020

        • Bug fixes
        • Use port 443 instead of 19090-19093 for avatars and chat
        • Synchronized playback of session assets
        • Minor improvements to the connection diagnostic tool


        AVATOUR for Apple App Store Release Notes

        Version: 2.3

        Date: Nov 24, 2021

        • Fix h.264 sdp issues that should support 4k video over webrtc

        Version: 2.2

        Date: Nov 20, 2021

        • Host app can work with http proxy in a restrictive corporate network. The proxy will need to support websocket connections. 

        Version: 2.0.3

        Date: Aug 7, 2021

        • Fix bug where guest audio level is low

        Version: 2.0.2  

        Date: Jul 27, 2021

        • Support for 2.0 infrastructure (webrtc) that lowers delay and improves performance in low bandwidth
        • Display camera preview in the host app
        • Video mask settings to hide parts of the 360 degree video feed.
        • Enabled horizon stabilization and direction lock

        Version: 2.0

        Date: Apr 27, 2021
        • Platform updates that allow for up to 20 guests to attend an AVATOUR session

        Known Issues (as compared to Android)

        • iOS version does not support the 2.0 delivery infrastructure (webrtc) at this time. This implies that iOS version requires a consistent / stable Wi-Fi connection to work well. 
        • Connection diagnostics tools, Camera preview still missing from the iOS version. Please use Ookla's Speedtest utility to check if uplink bandwidth meets minimum requirements. 
        • No camera preview

        Version: 1.0

        Date: Dec 7, 2020

        • iOS version of the AVATOUR Host app that was previously only available on Android. 
        • iOS version does not include a connection diagnostics tool for testing connectivity, or camera preview at this time. 

        AVATOUR app for Quest

        Version: 1.7.2

        Date: June 9th, 2022

        • Notifications 
          • A new Notification system will alert session participants if their bandwidth is low, and other situations that may have an impact on the session experience.

        Version: 1.5.28

        Date: May 4th, 2022

        • Join as a Spectator in VR
          • Users can now join a session as a Spectator in VR using a session’s Spectator Code (Spectator access must first be turned on in the Session Settings).

        Version: 1.5.21

        Date: April 19th, 2022

        • Drawing in VR
          • VR users can now draw on snapshots after taking the snapshot. Drawings are saved as part of the image and will also be visible when exporting the snapshot from within the console (available in the Asset Details panel)
        • Custom 360° Background for VR (Enterprise customers only)
          • Enterprise customers can now upload any 360° image (equirectangular format) to use as a background in VR during sessions. The image can be uploaded in the console via the Settings tab under Customization settings.

        Version: 1.4.11

        Date: Mar 12th, 2022

        • Changing seats : VR users can now select an empty seat on the Seat Map to move to a new seat.
        • Redesigned Asset Carousel : The Asset Carousel interface has been redesigned to show thumbnail previews of the assets in a large, draggable carousel. Any assets created and saved during the session are immediately available in the carousel as well.
        • VR users can now request a SuperFreeze from the 360° capture device in order to see a higher resolution 360° still image.

        Version: 1.3.0

        Date: Feb 02nd, 2022

        • The Avatour VR app has been completely overhauled to maximize performance. All 20 guests are now visible in VR, including participants joining from desktop or mobile devices.
        • VR users can now open a seat map to view a list of participants in the session, with the ability to change seats coming soon!

        Version: 1.0.26

        Date: Dec 12, 2021

        • Stability and Performance updates
        • UI/UX Fixes and Improvements
        • Added Exit session confirmation in VR
        • Added Display session code information in the carousal
        • Display application version label in session lobby and settings / more popup of HUD
        • Make screenshot preview windows draggable
        • Added Fade animation to 2D & 360 screenshot window
        • Reduced app package download size by approx. 60 MB to 120 MB

          Bug Fixes: 
        • Fixes the occasional crash when joining a session that has a 2d/360 video asset playing
        • Fixed crashes if the Oculus button is pressed
        • Fixed Quest App crashes when web user shares camera or desktop
        • Fixed issues with loading Ready Player Avatars
        • Fixed issues with 2d/ 360 asset playback
        • Fixed a few issues with synchronous playback of assets within a session
        • Fixed orientation and aspect ratio for secondary camera feeds in VR
        • Fixed aspect ratio for screen shares.
        • Removed laser sound when pressing the trigger
        • Removed the duplicate set of Quest controllers visible in post-session lobby (thumbs up/down screen)
        • Prevent VR guest access to asset player controls when guest access to session assets is disabled
        • Fix issue where host stream & 360 asset are playing on top of each other (interact one another)
        • Fixed UX issues that make renaming a snapshot or typing a chat message difficult with the main menu that keeps popping up.  
        • Fix app freezes when saving a snapshot to assets, or closing the asset carousal