We have developed a technology that makes three-dimensional scanning as easy as capturing video – a significant and practical benefit for hobbyists and the do-it-yourself crowd without design or engineering degrees. Instead of taking a conventional photo, the user simply moves the phone around the object of interest and after a few motions a 3D model appears on the screen. As all calculations are performed directly on the phone, the user gets immediate feedback and can select additional viewpoints to cover missing parts of the 3D model. This is an important advantage compared to solutions that ‘batch-process’ all the images in the cloud at a later time. The technology is becoming more and more pervasive not only in daily life, but also in the fields of cultural heritage and commerce.
The technology also allows the 3D capture of faces, giving a third dimension to portraits, profile pictures or images of loved ones. Having a convenient way of getting 3D models of everyday objects, users will now be able to copy real-world objects by scanning a full 360 degree model of an object. The resulting 3D model can be used for visualisation or augmented reality applications, or even be used for 3D printing, potentially at a remote location, effectively enabling the user to replicate an object.
As the presented technology requires nothing more than installing an app to turn a mobile phone into a 3D scanner, wide adoption will enable to build commercial services around the technology. Already now 3D models can be uploaded to online 3D printing services and duplicates received by mail a few days later. Other approaches take 3D scans of customers and create personalized products like orthotic insoles. These markets were very limited until now – with the Astrivis technology it is possible to reach hundreds of millions of potential end users at once.