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Unity Reflect adds Navisworks integration, BIM coordination

Unity announces Unity Reflect with Navisworks support, among other features.

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A new Unity Reflect update adds Navisworks integration for better BIM coordination. It also adds support for project sharing through the cloud and improved visuals.

The new update brings high-quality visuals to 3D models with data-rich interactions and the kind of visibility controls useful for AEC workflows.

Unity Reflect

The new Unity Reflect gives users the option to host projects “on-premise” or in the cloud, the former being highly useful for AEC projects that require high-level (think certain US government projects) security.

Unity Reflect Navisworks

The latest Unity Reflect supports Navisworks.

A year ago, Unity Reflect was launched and touted at the AIA National Convention with much fanfare. It started with its linkage and support for Autodesk Revit, but at the time, Architosh was told Unity’s partnership with Autodesk didn’t preclude future support for other non-Autodesk tools. Back in March, Unity added support for Trimble’s popular SketchUp and McNeel’s market-leading Rhino. Android was also added. It should be stated that Unity Reflect a year ago launched on Windows and Apple’s iOS (as iPads dominate the US construction market for tablets in the field).

Now with Autodesk Navisworks support the real-time immersive application becomes much more engaged in BIM collaboration—facilitating real-time, immersive, multi-party BIM collaboration across devices from tablet to mobile to desktop. This works because of the new linkage between Unity Reflect’s metadata support and the backend data in Navisworks.

The update also gains new visual quality improvements, multi-threading for greater performance and faster model loading (always a plus!), and improved navigation for users moving around a scene.

To learn more about this update, visit here.

Architosh Analysis and Commentary

Unity’s AEC in Public Roadmap shows some interesting items both under consideration, planned, and in development. Some items we heard a while ago seem clearly underway, like Unity Reflect for BIM 360. We are curious about this because if you can get an app inside of a web-browser-based tool, it can get around to many other CDEs as well. I’m referring to common data environments in AEC. 

With Unity Reflect first on the iOS platform, putting it on future ARM Macs will be a no-brainer and simple compile effort. Listed as planned, a plugin for Unity Reflect for ArchiCAD is in the mix, thereby giving Revit’s biggest competitor access to the same tools. ArchiCAD already has Epic Games with the Unreal Engine and Twinmotion in its corner, and the battle between Unity and Unreal over pro apps is a big net win for AEC users everywhere. Finally, under consideration is the ability to deploy Unity Reflect to a web page, thanks to WebGL. This may be useful for AE firms to embed the “real-time immersive application” into project websites. 

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