Dallas’ 900lbs Partners With Amazon for a Gamified Tutorial on Remote Working, Teaching, and Engaging

To show how Amazon Web Services' cloud computing offerings can increase productivity, 900lbs collaborated with the company to create a web-based educational application.

Amazon Web Services has decided to make a tutorial to show its capabilities available for virtual meetings, cloud-based contact centers, and virtual desktops.

The online, three-dimensional “game” is essentially a customized learning circuit that tracks a user’s progress through a point system. There’s a virtual tradeshow experience within, complete with an AWS avatar guide who explains the services and various kiosks.

It’s educational, interactive, and engaging—and Dallas-based 900lbs had a big hand in making it come to life.

“[There are] lots of new virtual, augmented, and innovative initiatives in the works as we all navigate these times of change,” 900lbs CEO and Founder Steve Deitz told Dallas Innovates. “Many awesome opportunities. Obstacles become opportunities for all of us but we just have to look through challenges with a constructive mindset.”

900lbs announced in a blog post that its latest project was a collaboration with AWS on a new web-based application. The challenge was to help current and prospective customers better understand AWS’ cloud computing offerings and their benefits in a unique way.

AWS has a breadth of services, so 900lbs knew it was a large undertaking.

Dubbed “the world’s most comprehensive and broadly adopted cloud platform,” AWS is intended to help customers lower costs, increase productivity, and innovate more quickly.

“AWS provides more services, and more features within those services, than any other cloud provider, which makes it faster, easier and more cost effective to move existing applications to the cloud and build nearly anything you can imagine,” 900lbs said. “With the breadth and sophistication of AWS offerings, explaining the benefits of services concisely and accurately to prospective customers is critical.”

After exploring ideas and developing a prototype, 900lbs and the AWS team together designed a gamified educational tool. At its core, the tutorial was meant to start a conversation around cloud computing and remote productivity.

But then 900lbs said it needed to take the project to the next level. So the team decided to develop the application using only AWS cloud services, providing “a platform for AWS to truly showcase their suite of web services.”

And that’s where “AWS Cloud Champion: Virtual Workplace Interactive Challenge” comes in.

Using Amazon Sumerian, 900lbs created the virtual tradeshow experience with 360 camera capabilities and customized lighting, along with the avatar host. The two teams then collaborated to integrate key tutorials, demonstrations, and case studies that bring cloud computing to life and show how AWS can enable remote productivity. 

Amazon described the new tool as a way for users to create and run virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and 3D applications quickly without requiring any specialized programming or 3D graphics expertise.

“The Amazon Sumerian-based avatar walks you through customer case studies, demonstrations, quiz questions, and solution highlights to keep you engaged through the entire learning experience,” AWS’ Nader Nanjiani wrote in a company blog. “The tutorial runs on desktops computers only. You do not need a special device like a gaming console or 3D glasses to view or hear content built in Amazon Sumerian.”

The experience is customizable depending on what users want to learn about. It takes around 10 minutes to complete all modules, and once 800 points is earned and a short quiz is taken, users can sign up for $50 in AWS Promotional Credit as a reward.

“900lbs is proud to partner with Amazon Web Services to drive business transformation,” the company said. “Together, we are continuing to explore new ways to leverage this tool to create effective and engaging experiences for any industry.”

Founded in 2008, Dallas-based 900lbs is a tech-driven design agency. The firm helps clients transition into the “Age of Experience” to get results with interactive initiatives and immersive storytelling. You can get a virtual tour of the future-focused company in our Innovative Spaces here.

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