A Switzerland-based company called Kapanu has now been acquired by the global dental company Ivoclar Vivadent, which likely means exciting new things for augmented reality (AR) in the world of dentistry. For clarification, the acquisition actually took place back in June and details about the deal itself – including financials and concessions – are not immediately available. However, Kapanu will reportedly continue to operate on its own as a subsidiary of Ivoclar Vivadent and its parent company has already begun showing off the results of its acquisition on the company's website since at least July – expounding on the possibilities provided by AR and Kapanu's "Augmented Reality Engine."
Kapanu made its first showing back in March at IDC 2017. At the time, the company was a spin-off of from ETH technical university in Zurich, Switzerland. The advancement itself utilizes 3D imaging already in use by dentists offices and labs, in combination with either tablet or computer-based rendering to provide dental patients with an easy way to visualize the results of future dental operations. The technology showed users an interactive before and after image based on their own mouth. That way, patients could approve of or disapprove of work before it is completed more permanently, either through surgery or with dentures. Moreover, Kapanu also stated that the system could be used to allow those same patients to customize their final look with help from their dentist and lab technicians, allowing them to get the look and smile they really want. Better still, the technology could, at the time of the showing, be accessed from home, at a dentist's office, or at the lab, adding a layer of convenience and comfort for patients.
Although there hasn't been much news about the project, outside of the professional dental community since the acquisition, Ivoclar Vivadent is a well-known world supplier of dental products, services, and technology. That means that, with any luck, the promises on offer from its new acquisition should – if they haven't already – begin appearing at dentist-related locations to some degree in the near future. Furthermore, the new technology could spur innovations in other fields of medicine if it becomes widely available and if both care providers and patients are happy with the results – making Kapanu a welcome addition to the rapidly advancing global health technologies market.