General Questions

How can I try out SeekBeak if I don't have any panoramic images?!

If you want to try SeekBeak with some sample images, try search the web for "Equirectangular" and you'll find lots of panoramas and 360° images that other people have created.

I'm hooked, how do I make my own panoramas?

You've started at a great time, there are many options available these days:
  • You can get something like a Ricoh Theta S one-shot camera that does it all for you.
  • Use apps like Google Camera on Android, or Google Streetview on your iPhone or Android. Instructions for using Street View on both platforms can be found here.
  • Dive in the professional deep end with a DSLR rig.

What is a Snap?

A SeekBeak Snap is a combination of the main image or video, along with any hotspots and associated audio/image files you attach to it.

Why don't you have dedicated iOS/Android Apps?

We did have an iPhone app initially, but we scrapped it.
We found that trying to get clients to install a custom app was way more hassle than just sending them to a webpage using a browser, which is already on every phone.
If you're doing a demo to a client, or want to show some content to somebody on the spot, getting them to download an app first is a pain. Depending on data plans and download limits, they may not even be able to download a larger sized app unless they're on WiFi!

A large percentage of people will simply move on if they’re forced to install an app to do or view something. One less step in getting your content to them means lots more engagement for you.

Another reason is that people with strict corporate plan phones aren’t actually able to install new apps, but they already have a browser, so there's another potential segment that you miss out on.

A really big reason: everyone always gets the latest updates and features instantly, on any phone/desktop, without having to keep apps updated.

What does SeekBeak mean!?

The name comes from the initial development of the app. We were testing it on Google Cardboard, and found that the focus point of the image we were looking at was wherever we were pointing our nose. When hunting for hotspots we were literally "seeking with our beaks".

Technical Questions

My Embedded Snap doesn't move when I move my mobile phone, record audio, or allow fullscreen viewing.

Most likely the page you've embedded your Snap in is HTTP. SeekBeak uses secure HTTPS only, as there are some features which browsers will soon be allowing only over HTTPS connections, including device motion and fullscreen. The list of 'powerful features' features SeekBeak uses, as they're called by the Google Chrome security team are:
  • Device motion / orientation (Read motion data from phones etc.)
  • Fullscreen
  • getUserMedia (Allow SeekBeaks built in MP3 recorder to work)
The official fix is: make sure you’re using the Snap over an HTTPS connection to access the ‘powerful features’.

My Snap image looks skewed / distorted!

SeekBeak works best with equirectangular images at a 2:1 ratio.
For example: if your image is 5000 pixels wide, it will ideally be 2500 pixels high.

My Embed from a 3rd party site isn't working.

We're very heavy on security here, which means that all your SeekBeak content is delivered over HTTPS. If your embed code is just using insecure HTTP, it won't display. Change the HTTP to HTTPS inside the Embed code and it should display fine. If it still doesn't work, feel free to contact us with the Embed link in question and we'll give it a look.

My Embedded YouTube/Video Provider won't autoplay on mobile without tapping a button.

This is unfortunately out of our hands, and is by design to combat autoplaying ads on websites, and save mobile data.

From Apple: "In Safari on iOS (for all devices, including iPad), where the user may be on a cellular network and be charged per data unit, preload and autoplay are disabled. No data is loaded until the user initiates it.".

Google has followed suit as well: "Android has disabled autoplay in versions 4.1+."

Audio Questions

I can't record any audio in the SeekBeak editor.

You must be using a recent desktop version of Google Chrome or Firefox to enable the SeekBeak audio encoder.

I am using Chrome or Firefox, but still can't record audio!

When you click the Enable Audio Recording button in the file manager, your browser should pop up a window asking if you want SeekBeak to have access to your microphone. If you accidentally clicked "No", or closed the popup, you can access the popup again by clicking the microphone / camera icon in the browsers address bar.

I don't get any audio in Windows using the Microsoft Edge browser.

If you're running an "N" or "KN" version of Windows, you won't have the necessary features to use/play audio. You'll have to install the Media Features Pack for your version of Windows and reboot the computer.