Amazon Sumerian simplifies VR creation, no code, in the browser

Amazon are becoming well known for surprise products and Sumerian is their latest. Its a tool that lets novices create and run VR and AR apps without knowing how to build 3D assets or how to write a line of programming. Sumerian is going up against juggernauts in the industry like Unity and Unreal Engine with the ability to build immersive and interactive environments to run on the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and iOS, with Android ARCore support coming soon.

The app lets you import existing .FBX or .OBJ 3D assets for now, but in the future, they’ll let you import a whole Unity project. What’s great is Sumerian features the ability to include a digital character or host that can be customised in appearance, speech and behavior. Digital characters can help engage audiences in the virtual world and in an environment where users can look anywhere, they can help guide the attention of the audience. They also have the capacity to be the vehicle through which the story is told.

For example, businesses could use Sumerian to build a virtual classroom to train new employees across the world, or build a virtual environment that enables people to tour a building remotely. Amazon is pitching Sumerian as the tool that provides the building blocks to create highly immersive and interactive 3D experiences including adding objects (e.g. characters, furniture, and landscape), and designing, animating, and scripting environments. Basically your output is only limited by your imagination.

Gone are the days of needing a multi-gigabyte IDE to develop mixed reality applications, this tool lets you design scenes directly from your browser. If you do want to turn things up to 11, then you can script the logic that controls an object’s behavior using Sumerian’s visual editor or JavaScript editor.

When you’re done building, distribution is made easy, as your completed scene is stored in the cloud and has a unique URL which you can use to access it. Sumerian is based on the WebGL JavaScript API for graphic rendering and WebVR JavaScript API for virtual reality devices.

Here’s a quick sample scene.

More information, or to sign up at

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Jason Cartwright
Jason Cartwright
Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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