While its competitors are concentrating on building AR cloud platforms to provide advanced AR capabilities to mobile apps, Ubiquity6 is taking a step in another direction.
On Monday, the company opened its Display.land tool for the general public, following the launch of "early access" in September. With the platform, anyone can capture digital 3D maps of real places with just the standard camera of a smartphone or tablet. Moreover, the 3D scans are geocoded with centimeter precision.
A mobile app for iOS and Android makes scanning your environment easier. Once the environment is captured, users can upload the data to the Ubiquity6 servers for processing. Once the results are ready, users can annotate the scene with hotspots or 3D effects via the app's editor mode.
When users are happy with their edits, they can publish them along with the options to the GPS -pins to share or hide, and make the models public or private.
After publication, the 3D models can be shared with others via a web link for viewing via a desktop or mobile browser (the file can also be downloaded). And because Display.land supports the WebVR standard, users can explore 3D scans via any VR or AR headset with a compatible browser. This means that the Magic Leap One and the HoloLens 2 can display the content in AR.
The platform itself also functions as a platform for social sharing, a kind of Instagram for 3D content. The app allows users to browse through the creations of others, explore them during a hotspot or free-form tour with touch screen movements, share content with others, like or respond to messages and follow their favorite creators.
" Display.land is & # 39; the world's first user-created destination of shared, persistent virtual spaces on a 1: 1 scale with the real world, "said Anjney Midha, CEO and co-founder of Ubiquity6, in a statement. "Since launching in beta, we've seen the Display.land community map and shared thousands of real-world spaces in more than 50 countries, from graffiti-filled streets in Barcelona and coffee shops in Tokyo to secret gardens in London and underground bunkers in Sausalito. Every day, the people of Display.land learn new things about each other's cultures from around the world by sharing the spaces they love. "
I had the opportunity to play briefly with Display.land during the early access phase . The process of capturing a 3D scene is like a mix between the ARKit / ARCore process of finding a horizontal surface to anchor content and take a panoramic photo, but with more walking around.
While users walk around their subject, a meter informs them of their progress. There is a minimum threshold for capturing a scene; This is where I would usually stop, and the results are inconsistent as a result.
However, while browsing the Display.land community, there are some really breathtaking examples of the tool at work. One in particular, Sk8orDie from Valerio Paolucci, shows an empty-pole-converted skateboarding paradise in stunning details, with every inch of graffiti (my favorite is the SLAYER logo) visible. Paolucci's annotations also describe the process of capturing the subject, as a guide for beginners.
And the Display.land community is active. Midha itself is perhaps the most active, one of the first to follow me on the platform and definitely the first to compliment my first published model, a scan of a weight machine at my local gym. In less than 24 hours, the project was explored 16 times and received 12 likes and six comments. While this is probably a product of a small community, given the early access phase before today, it is certainly the sign of an active, engaged community.
Of course, it is not exactly the AR cloud platform that we expected when Ubiquity6 came out of stealth, but it is actually a logical step toward that end state. As users scan their environment, they create a digital copy of the world that forms the basis for multiplayer experiences, lasting content and true occlusion. At the same time, Ubiquity6 is tapping into the growing market for 3D scanning, a growing space in which Jaunt enjoyed an exit through acquisition by Verizon after turning VR to 3D scanning.