360 Cities founder and CEO Jeffrey Martin gave a talk at the Tucson 2010 Panoramic Photography Conference on April 15th and unveiled our new and improved offer to the professional panoramic photographer community: 360 Cities PRO accounts.

We will still have free accounts and we’ll keep the ability to publish an unlimited number of panoramas on 360cities.net and on our Google Earth layer (if approved). 360 Cities PRO accounts will be a new addition. PRO accounts are designed for panorama photographers who not only want to publish their general panos, but also want to use 360 Cities as part of their paid work for customers.

The launch date will be announced in the near future. When we launch it we’ll have two kinds of accounts:

  • Free accounts for sharing panoramas with the world, putting them on the 360 Cities map and (if approved) also on Google Earth. Free accounts let you publish any general pano that’s cool or interesting or simply important to you or your friends.
  • PRO accounts have all the functionality of free accounts with the added ability to publish commercial / business panoramas i.e., of hotels, shops, restaurants, etc.

To sign up for a free 360cities.net account, go to the 360 Cities homepage and click Sign Up or Join.

PRO Accounts: Publish All Your “Business” Panoramas

360 Cities PRO accounts give you the right to publish an unlimited number of “business” panoramas on 360cities.net. What is a business panorama? It’s an image of, for example, a restaurant, hotel room, shop, museum, club, bar, etc., that clearly promotes the business it shows. (But a pano of you and your friends having a party in a bar or restaurant probably wouldn’t be considered a business pano.) We will publish a more detailed definition soon. If you’re a free account holder and you upload a business pano, it will remain in your unpublished queue. If you decide to purchase a PRO Account later, your unpublished business panos can then be published.  IMPORTANT: The new definition applies only for panos published after we launch the PRO accounts product — commercial / business panos that have been published before now will remain free.

EXAMPLE BUSINESS PANO: Spa – Hacienda El Carmen in Mexico

 

As a PRO account member, you’ll be able to embed your business panos  into your clients’ websites for a small fee for each embed (prices coming soon). The embedding price will cover one year instead of three years and will be lower than our current price. It will still be possible to embed non-business 360 Cities panoramas in non-commercial websites for free.

 

Is my panorama a business panorama?

If the main or obvious purpose of the pano is to promote a business, yes. We’ll provide a more detailed definition with examples soon.

 

When are you going to launch PRO Accounts?

In June 2010 (stay tuned for updates).

 

I’m currently using 360 Cities to show my portfolio. Do I need to purchase a PRO account?

No. You only need to go PRO when you want to publish “business” panoramas.

 

What’s the price of a PRO Account?

We’ll reveal the pricing soon, but the cost of a PRO account plus the cost of embedding in a website will be lower than we currently charge for embedding (in some cases much lower). In fact, we think you’ll like the change a lot. If you are really interested in getting started with a PRO account even before we officially launch, contact us to find out more.

 

Some other Questions?

Ask them below this blog post, we’ll answer them either immediately or in our next blog post about the new PRO accounts.

Update April 29th: Discuss PRO accounts in the forum

To learn more about 360 Cities PRO accounts, keep reading this blog.

18 Comments

  1. Alex says:

    I have not absolutely understood. It means that I cannot publish a panorama with restaurants, bars, shops, discos and other places any more???????? It is very very bad, I do not see in it anything good, at least for us – simple users. I think it is necessary to apply this only to virtual tours.

  2. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Alex, thanks for your message. I’ve looked in your account at 360cities.net and to put your mind to the rest all your panoramas you have there would be considered as nonbusiness according the new rules, except the “hotel-posadas”, so don’t worry. Random photos of restaurants, bars, shops and discos with people or your friends will always be allowed to be published under a free account as long as the panorama is not “business” looking. We will limit the free accounts as little as possible, if at all, and images of nonbusiness nature will always be accepted and welcomed at 360cities.net. On the other hand, an empty restaurant with arranged tables or an image of a hotel room will be considered a business panorama.

  3. pilipim says:

    Hello. we have a fairly difficult to make a virtual panoramas. For example in order to convince customers that post virtual tours on your site will need to provide examples, and better if it will be my work. Can I put at least one virtual tour for free as a sample for demonstration to potential customers, at least until then, unless you start working that same business?
    (Sorry for the machine translation)
    привет. у нас довольно сложно зарабатывать на виртуальных панорамах. К примеру для того что бы убедить заказчиков разместить свои виртуальные туры на вашем ресурсе нужно будет предоставить примеры, и лучше если это будут мои работы. Можно ли разместить хотя бы один виртуальный тур бесплатно как образец, для демонстрации потенциальным клиентам, хотя бы до тех пор, пока не начнет работать этот самый бизнес?
    (извините за машинный перевод)

  4. Mark Schuster says:

    In principle I see no reason why you shouldn’t charge and make a reasonable profit. However, until prices are published I won’t know if I will avail myself of Pro.
    How did the idea of selling prints go? Or didn’t it?
    Anyhow, good luck.
    Mark

  5. jrmessi says:

    Such a pitty. No good.

  6. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    pilipim, yes, it will be possible to build a virtual tour (groups of panoramas) and show it to your customer even as a free account. You won’t be able to embed it to a website though.

  7. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Hi Mark, thanks. Selling prints is far from profitable, the same thing for adsense. Stay tuned for pricing.

  8. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Why is that? :)

  9. Thomas says:

    How does this work toghether with Google Business Photos & Panoramas?
    http://maps.google.com/help/maps/businessphotos/faq.html

  10. Alex says:

    I the novice user and want to make and upload many new panoramas. I want to keep in my memory many places where I was, for example as POSADAS. I do not receive from it any money but also I do not wish to pay for publish the apartment or a bar of my friend. I repeat that you doing it not improvement and on the contrary, for us – your users it is the big bad moment! We talked recently about a new layout of the site and I would not see that you listened the opinion of your users. I very very liked your site when I on it was registered, but now it disappoints more and more (((( I see in it only one reason, a problem of all people – money… Why you do not wish to take money for panorama embedding in other sites? It is simple. Has wanted to sell and build in third site – pay for it. Me too excuse for awful translate I one more Russian on your site. The conclusion: personally I am not happy, I think as well as all other users, unfortunately we can’t prevent it.

  11. Alex says:

    What in it of good? For us first of all.

  12. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Alex, nobody is forcing you to pay for a pro account. We believe that majority of members of 360cities.net won’t pay so we’ll make sure we limit them as little as possible. As a free account owner you will still be able to publish unlimited number of your panoramas for free. Also, nobody is going to unpublish your existing panoramas. New rules will apply only for new content uploaded after when we launch pro accounts. I understand your concerns, but when you just want to remember a place, there are surely ways to make the panorama look as not business – (i.e. not a spotless hotel lobby with arranged furniture). That said we haven’t really published the rules for determining if an image is business or not so please stay tuned for that.

  13. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Alex, FYI we’ve had a lot of positive feedback from some professional photographers re pro accounts so don’t think you speak for all users of 360cities. The reason we announced pro accounts in advance is to answer questions our users might have so it’s fine if you keep asking. It’s very likely that some people have the same concerns as you have. The key thing for you to understand is that we will still continue to have free accounts that can publish unlimited number of panoramas, as long as they are not “business”. From your previous comments I understood that you are not planning to make any money with your panoramas so I don’t see neither good or bad things in pro accounts for you. You can simply ignore them and continue using 360cities.net for free. Together with many other users like you. That is perfectly fine, appreciated and welcomed. Nobody will force you to buy a pro account if you don’t want it and there are surely ways to make sure to make your panos that you take for fun to look as non business, if you really take them just for fun. Cheers, -Jan

  14. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Thomas, Hans, this is something different. Google is rolling this out in US, Australia and Japan at the moment and they are indeed planning to include 360 panos in their offer. If I understood it from their FAQs properly, though, they are just preparing imagery for them now, and the 360s are not gonna be online yet.

  15. Announcing 360 Cities PRO Accounts: Coming Soon! | It's a Wide Wide World * World Panorama Stock Photo Blog says:

    [...] panoramas on 360cities.net and on our Google Earth layer (if approved ) See the original post here: Announcing 360 Cities PRO Accounts: Coming Soon! Share 360 Cities accounts, cities, clients, conference, dining, immersive tour builder, [...]

  16. 360 virtual tours says:

    great looking software, what sort of money are we talking for a business licence?

  17. Jan Vrsinsky says:

    Hi, the cost of a PRO account is 179EUR/year. You can apply here http://www.360cities.net/pro and find more information here http://help.360cities.net/pro-account. Cheers