Augmented reality solutions and 3D avatars in particular are a technology segment "that is going to catch everything," according to Mahesh Ramasubramanian, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Loom.ai, the company behind the platform powering Samsung's AR Emoji on the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus. The most important Android flagships of the year marked the commercial debut of the San Francisco, California-based startup's technology but Loom.ai is already working on a number of new applications that it's expecting to see hit the market in the near future with the goal of paving the way for an entirely reimagined take on visual media, Mr. Ramasubramanian said in an interview with AndroidHeadlines.
The extreme versatility of the company's platform is twofold as it spans both hardware and software; in regards to the former, Loom.ai says its technology is hardware-agnostic, being able to take advantage of any conventional imaging sensor in order to immortalize a user in the form of a digital avatar. "Every device has a camera" and can hence allow for 3D avatars, said Kiran Bhat, the other Loom.ai co-founder and Academy Award winner who spent years working on facial capture tech and visual effects in Hollywood before moving on the apply his knowledge to a broader set of use cases. On the software side of things, photography and messaging are far from the only applications which could benefit from 3D avatars, with the two entrepreneurs pointing to gaming and e-commerce as some other potential segments in which such technology could thrive.
The duo wasn't prepared to confirm they're presently actively working on implementing their solution in the context of games, having only hinted at such a project while promising more details on the matter should follow in the near future. Loom.ai's currently ongoing and unannounced collaborations involve various companies, "the kind of partners who aren't just phone makers," Mr. Ramasubramanian said, suggesting at least one more handset vendor is presently interested in developing its own version of AR Emoji or another service revolving around 3D avatars. The versatility of the technology could also allow it to work on the Galaxy S8 or other Samsung-made phones but it's up to the Seoul-based company to decide whether to expand the availability of AR Emoji, the industry veterans revealed. Ultimately, 3D avatars are bound to take over the world by virtue of the fact they can allow for "magical experiences" that change the way of how we see and interact with images, thus being able to impact everything from photography and conferencing to broadcasting and a wide variety of other fields, Mr. Ramasubramanian concluded.