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Meet NeRF, an accessible version of 3D imaging technology – Phandroid

Meet NeRF, an accessible version of 3D imaging technology – Phandroid

Smartphones are an incredibly impressive piece of technology that is constantly evolving – they have moved beyond video calls, gaming and web surfing, and are now being used for more advanced purposes. In particular, KIRI Innovations – a Shenzhen-based company – is using Neural Radiance Field (NeRF) technology to develop new advances in photorealistic 3D scanning and imaging technology using mobile phone hardware.

NeRF on smartphones

That said, the KIRI Innovations team has announced that it is bringing NeRF to Android phones and iPhones with or without LiDAR. Using the KIRI Engine app, KIRI has created 3D scanning options available to non-LiDAR users, which are often absent on mobile devices due to the challenges associated with developing apps for such purposes, given the diversity of Android devices across different markets and manufacturers.

Using NeRF technology, users will be able to render realistic 3D images that can be viewed from different angles by scanning an object or environment using their mobile devices. Being easy to use, it offers tremendous potential in fields that benefit from photorealistic 3D visualizations such as educational content, medical research, tourism, gaming and more.

Peter Yang, KIRI Innovation’s co-founder, describes NeRF as “an algorithm that takes light paths and represents how they bounce off surfaces, to translate them into a complex, highly detailed and realistic 3D scene.” In addition, co-founder and CEO Jack Wang says that “it may take some time for people to understand and adopt NeRF. But once it is understood, I don’t think anyone, including ourselves, is ready for what NeRF will unlock. This is super exciting, we can’t wait to see what people do with this technology available on their phones!”

With the app, KIRI aims to provide users with a free pricing structure, with no paywalls on specific file formats, zero watermarks and free access to most of the app’s features such as cropping in the app and “Camera pose”. Currently, the app is in development, although KIRI plans to demonstrate the software – specifically the NeRF scanning workflow – during CES 2023.

“Camera Pose” for nerf studio

Currently, KIRI Innovations has launched its new “Camera Pose” software to export NeRF ready data to nerfstudio, its open source API was developed by researchers and contributors working with NeRF since 2020. Camera position is also at present the first and only option for smartphones that does not require LiDAR, and is currently the only option for all Android and iPhones (iOS 13 and later) capable of recording 1080p video. In addition, the data can be processed approximately twice as fast as the data from current, free PC-based alternatives.

Like many of the features of the KIRI Engine 3D scanning app, Camera Pose freely available to all users with a KIRI Engine account. The aim is to enable more researchers, content creators, students and enthusiasts to explore and learn more about the NeRF technology and its potential for future applications.

The KIRI Engine 3D scanner is available for download on the Google Play Store and the iOS App Store.

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