Baltimore companies teamed up with the Ravens to make M&T Bank Stadium's AR photobooth - Technical.ly Baltimore

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Baltimore companies teamed up with the Ravens to make M&T Bank Stadium’s AR photobooth

Balti Virtual and American Bully Manufacturing created Squad Snaps. It lets fans pose (virtually) alongside Ravens players, and get a photo to share.

Squad Snaps is new for the 2021 season inside M&T Bank Stadium.

(Photo courtesy of Balti Virtual)

Local tech firms teamed up with the Baltimore Ravens to add to the experience for fans at M&T Bank Stadium.

Using augmented reality (AR) from Balti Virtual, a custom-built touch screen kiosk from American Bully Manufacturing, the Baltimore Ravens home games now feature a photo booth where fans can take pictures (virtually) with their favorite players.

In Squad Snaps, game-goers pose for photos side-by-side with likenesses of Ravens’ stars. Once photos are taken, they receive an image to share on their phone.

This project was in talks since before the 2020 season, but was delayed a season when the COVID 19 pandemic closed home games to fans. Balti Virtual captured green screen footage during the Baltimore Ravens Media Day so fans can have the chance to pose with all of their favorite players, including QB Lamar Jackson, kicker Justin Tucker, linebacker Patrick Queen, and nine others.

“From a technical, pure software it wasn’t the most complicated thing, but just all the moving parts,” said Will Gee, CEO and founder of Balti Virtual. “We always know that delivering projects and getting that last 5% is really where the magic happens.”

In this case, that final push in the product red zone meant coordinating image capturing with players, and the tight deadline of manufacturing the booth before the season started — not to mention the high profile of working with the Ravens. It all culminated in an AR booth that received a great reception and steady lines throughout the Ravens’ first home game this season.

Howard County-based American Bully Manufacturing got onboard after CEO Andrew Sherman made a connection with Gee at a Baltimore business networking event. Sherman and his company came up with the design of the booth and added concepts to Balti Virtual’s ideas, making it a very collaborative process between the companies.

“Our specialty is taking something and perfecting it with precision,” said Sherman. “Because we offer and provide a lot of the services in-house and most of our competitors don’t, we can develop, build and show, all in-house in a matter of weeks.”

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Squad Snaps lets fans pose “beside” Ravens players like QB Lamar Jackson (right) (Courtesy photo)

The free Squad Snaps photobooth is installed on the lower concourse at section 106 (near Gate A1) and will be in the stadium for the entire 2021/2022 Ravens season. Fans can expect a second booth before the end of the season due to the high demand.

For Gee, the success is a major win for Balti Virtual. The company is seeing many inquiries about its 3D asset creation skills. A world where Balti Virtual is creating products where people can take photos with Elsa from Frozen or Guardians of the Galaxy’s Groot isn’t too far off.

“It’s nice to have products to offer to a client where we can point to the solution, show how it works, how people reacted to it,” said Gee. “For a company like ours where a lot of time we’re doing very different projects month to month or week to week, dong more things that build on each other is a huge win for us from a business perspective. We’re not going to say we’re going to be an all in photo experience company but being able to offer this is really exciting.”


Donte Kirby is a 2020-2022 corps member for Report for America, an initiative of The Groundtruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. This position is supported by the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation. -30-
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