Sketchfab

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Sketchfab
Sketchfab logo.svg
Sketchfab screenshot.png
Type of site
3D models platform
Available inEnglish
URLsketchfab.com
CommercialYes
RegistrationFree (Optional)
Users6,000,000
Launched
  • March 10, 2011 (original)
  • 2012 (current)
Current statusActive

Sketchfab is a 3D modeling platform website to publish, share, discover, buy and sell 3D, VR and AR content. It provides a viewer based on the WebGL and WebXR technologies that allows users to display 3D models on the web, to be viewed on any mobile browser, desktop browser or Virtual Reality headset.

The company behind it is today based in Paris and New York City. Sketchfab took part in the Spring 2013 TechStars New York City startup accelerator program,[1] raised $2 million in December 2013 and $7 million in June 2015.

On July 21, 2021, Epic Games acquired Sketchfab.[2]

Service[edit]

Viewer[edit]

The main product of Sketchfab is a 3D, Virtual reality (VR) and Augmented reality (AR) model viewer. It enables users to move freely around or inside the 3D scene using mouse, touch manipulation, VR or AR. In addition to static 3D models, the viewer is able to play and control 3D animations. Viewers can enable the VR mode to see the model in Virtual Reality headsets or the AR mode to insert the model within the real world via a mobile device.

The 3D viewer is used on the Sketchfab website and mobile apps,[3][4] but can also be embedded on external websites, notably on Facebook,[5][6] Twitter[7] or Wordpress.[8]

Portal and marketplace[edit]

Sketchfab provides online and mobile community portals, where visitors can browse, rate, download or buy[9] user generated 3D models.

Users of Sketchfab have profile pages, premium users can customize and share their models privately.[10] Sketchfab users can choose to make their 3D model files available for download under Creative Commons licenses[9] or to sell them in the Sketchfab store.[11][12] With content available for sale or download, Sketchfab is positioned as a 3D model marketplace and as a 3D printing marketplace since some models are compatible with 3D printing.

3D asset management[edit]

Sketchfab offers to paying enterprise customers a dedicated platform to share, manage and collaborate on 3D assets.[13][14]

Native applications[edit]

A selection of Sketchfab models are available within a native application for the following VR headsets: Google Cardboard,[15][16] Samsung Gear VR,[17] HTC Vive[18] and Oculus Rift.[19]

The mobile application can be used to view the 3D models in Augmented Reality leveraging the ARKit APIs[20] on iOS and ARCore[21] on Android.

Model upload and download[edit]

3D models can be uploaded to Sketchfab from its website or directly from various 3D software, using plugins[22] (for example for 3ds Max[23] or SketchUp[24]) or natively (from Blender[25][26][27] or Adobe Photoshop[28]).

Sketchfab offers an API allowing developers to integrate functionality for searching and downloading Sketchfab's Creative Commons licensed 3D models into their applications.[29]

Technology[edit]

Sketchfab relies on the WebGL JavaScript API to display 3D on web pages in all major modern web browsers. It does not rely on third-party plugins.

Sketchfab implements the WebVR JavaScript API[30][31][32] to provide a Virtual Reality mode of its viewer on compatible VR headsets.

The 3D viewer uses the open-source OSG.JS JavaScript library,[33] a library created and largely maintained by Sketchfab employees.[34] Rendering is achieved using classic real-time rendering or physically based rendering.[35][36]

Company[edit]

Sketchfab was initially created by entrepreneur and 3D developer Cédric Pinson under the domain name ShowWebGL in early 2011.[37][38] He was joined in early 2012 by Alban Denoyel, and they relaunched the site under the name Sketchfab in March 2012.[39] Pierre-Antoine Passet joined as CPO[clarification needed] in September 2012.

Startup accelerators[edit]

The startup was part of the third batch of the French startup accelerator Le Camping in June 2012.[40] It was later selected into Mozilla's WebFWD accelerator program during that same year.[41] The year after, Sketchfab was selected in the Spring 2013 TechStars class in New York City.[1]

Fundraising[edit]

In February 2013, Sketchfab raised an angel round of 370,000 euros.[42][43] Less than one year after, in December 2013, Sketchfab raised $2 million from Balderton Capital with Partech Ventures, Borealis Ventures, David Cohen and existing angel investors also participated in the funding.[44][45][46] In June 2015, Sketchfab raised a $7 million Series A led by FirstMark Capital.[47][48][49] In December 2018, Brendan Iribe, the original CEO and co-founder of Oculus invested in Sketchfab.[50]

Awards[edit]

  • Top 8 at Pioneers Festival 2012[51]
  • Best “Lightweight” Startup, the Europas Awards 2013[52]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Eugene Chung (April 2, 2013). "TechStars NYC 2013 Class". TechStars. Archived from the original on September 24, 2015. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
  2. ^ "Sketchfab is Joining the Epic Games Family". Sketchfab Community Blog. July 21, 2021. Retrieved July 21, 2021.
  3. ^ "Sketchfab on the App Store". App Store. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  4. ^ "Sketchfab - Android Apps on Google Play". play.google.com. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  5. ^ Alban (February 26, 2015). "Facebook now supports Sketchfab 3D embeds! - Sketchfab Blog". Sketchfab. Archived from the original on May 4, 2015. Retrieved March 10, 2015.
  6. ^ Stott, Rory (March 2, 2015). "Embed Your 3D Sketchfab Models on Facebook". ArchDaily.
  7. ^ "alban denoyel on Twitter". Twitter. September 16, 2016. Retrieved September 16, 2016.
  8. ^ "Sketchfab 3D and VR Content". Support. February 27, 2016. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  9. ^ a b "Sketchfab launches a Download Option and reaches 200k 3D files". Sketchfab. October 30, 2014. Archived from the original on November 6, 2014. Retrieved November 5, 2014.
  10. ^ "Plans & Pricing - Sketchfab". Sketchfab. Retrieved September 16, 2016.
  11. ^ "We're launching the Sketchfab Store in Beta - Sketchfab Blog". Sketchfab Blog. January 17, 2018. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  12. ^ Dillet, Romain. "Sketchfab launches a store to become a stock photo site for 3D models". TechCrunch. Retrieved February 18, 2018.
  13. ^ "Sketchfab for Teams". Sketchfab. Retrieved July 2, 2020.
  14. ^ "Sketchfab launches team platform to share and collaborate on 3D models". TechCrunch. Retrieved July 2, 2020.
  15. ^ "Sketchfab VR for Cardboard - Android Apps on Google Play". play.google.com. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  16. ^ "Sketchfab VR on the App Store". App Store. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  17. ^ "Sketchfab VR". Experiences | Oculus. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  18. ^ "Sketchfab VR on Steam". store.steampowered.com. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  19. ^ "Sketchfab VR". Experiences | Oculus. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  20. ^ Dillet, Romain. "Sketchfab's app might be the best way to try ARKit". TechCrunch. Retrieved September 26, 2017.
  21. ^ "Announcing Sketchfab AR on Android - Sketchfab Blog". Sketchfab Blog. November 9, 2017. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  22. ^ "Sketchfab Exporters". Sketchfab.
  23. ^ Klaas Nienhuis. "Sketchfab - Autodesk 3ds Max - Autodesk Exchange Apps". Archived from the original on July 20, 2014. Retrieved January 19, 2014.
  24. ^ Alexander Schreyer. "SketchUp to Sketchfab.com Uploader - SketchUp Extension Warehouse".
  25. ^ Bart (March 24, 2014). "Sketchfab is the first 'Commercial' Add-on Bundled with Blender". BlenderNation.
  26. ^ "We now ship with Blender!". Sketchfab. March 24, 2014. Archived from the original on December 30, 2014. Retrieved March 25, 2014.
  27. ^ "Blender 2.70: Addons". Blender Wiki. Archived from the original on May 16, 2015. Retrieved March 25, 2014.
  28. ^ "Major Update to Adobe Photoshop CC Brings 3D Printing to the Design World" (PDF) (Press release). Adobe. January 16, 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 1, 2014.
  29. ^ Chin, Monica. "3D creators now have access to a massive new object library". Mashable. Retrieved March 29, 2018.
  30. ^ "Experience Virtual Reality on the web with Chrome". Google. February 9, 2017. Retrieved March 6, 2017.
  31. ^ "WebVR - Bringing Virtual Reality to the Web". webvr.info. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  32. ^ "Desktop WebVR (Vive, Oculus)". Sketchfab Help Center. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  33. ^ "OSG.JS". osgjs.org. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  34. ^ "cedricpinson/osgjs". GitHub. Retrieved March 4, 2017.
  35. ^ Bart (March 4, 2015). "Sketchfab releases Physically Based Rendering". BlenderNation.
  36. ^ "Physically Based Rendering".
  37. ^ "ShowWebGl.com Whois Record".
  38. ^ denoyel, alban (January 12, 2019). "How Sketchfab got started". alban denoyel. Retrieved January 14, 2019.
  39. ^ "SketchFab.com Whois Record".
  40. ^ "Le Camping Season 3".
  41. ^ "Portfolio WebFWD".
  42. ^ Liam Boogar (February 25, 2013). "With 20,000+ users on board, Sketchfab raises a 370K€ Angel round for its YouTube of 3D". Rude Baguette.
  43. ^ "Sketchfab on AngelList". 2013.
  44. ^ John Biggs (December 6, 2013). "3D Model Sharing Service Sketchfab Raises $2 Million". Techcrunch.
  45. ^ "Sketchfab raises $2m to scale its "YouTube for 3D files"". Balderton Capital. December 5, 2013. Archived from the original on March 12, 2014.
  46. ^ Ricardo Bilton (December 5, 2013). "Sketchfab raises $2M to make itself the 'YouTube for 3D design'". VentureBeat.
  47. ^ Alban Denoyel. "Sketchfab raises $7 Million to build the place for 3D, VR and AR on the web". Archived from the original on March 13, 2016. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
  48. ^ "Get your 3D printers ready: Sketchfab raises $7 million to be the world's 3D file hub". VentureBeat. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
  49. ^ "Welcoming Sketchfab to the FirstMark Family! | FirstMark Capital - New York City Venture Capital". firstmarkcap.com. Archived from the original on June 11, 2017. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
  50. ^ denoyel, alban (December 17, 2018). "Happy to share @brendaniribe (co-founder and former CEO of @oculus) recently joined the @Sketchfab journey as an investor. Great to have you on board, Brendan!". @albn. Retrieved January 14, 2019.
  51. ^ "Finalists 2012, Pioneers Festival". Pioneers Festival. 2012.
  52. ^ Mike Butcher (January 22, 2013). "The Europas – Europe's Tech Startup Oscars – Showcases A Booming European Scene". TechCrunch.