Google Launches Project Tango, a 3D Sensor-Enabled Smartphone

Google announced Project Tango. A Smartphone that will be able to measure the 3D surroundings like human. You just walk in a room with your Smartphone and it will take measurements of the room. It can even detect movements of objects in the surroundings. This will have unlimited scopes for Virtual Reality apps and games.

The 5-inch Smartphone will run Android and be equipped a series of 3D sensors capable of taking more than a quarter of a million measurements each second. Google envisions these sensors will have a number of applications from gaming to indoor navigation.

The Smartphone is still in early stages of development, and the first prototypes will only be available to a limited group of developers. The first 200 prototypes, which Google expects to be distributed by mid-March, will go to a group of developers hand-picked by Google.

The Google Project Tango devices work by using a motion tracking camera and a depth sensor built into their backsides. While being moved around, the sensors will detect their orientation and what's in front of them, using that data to build out a 3D map of their surroundings. While the basic goal is to create detailed indoor maps, Google's distribution of developer devices speaks to the other possibilities it sees coming out of this type of data: it suggests that Tango could be used to create more realistic augmented reality games or to assist the visually impaired when they are navigating an unusual area.

Of course, like Project Tango Smartphone, these sensors are not obtainable for the general public or in consumer devices. At least not yet. It is entirely possible that Google's moon shot project evolves into some form or part of a consumer device in the future, and OmniVision's image sensors might be coming along for the ride.

The future is awesome!
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