May 10: One among the many factors that drove masses into Pokemon Go was that it was based on a real-world map. Now Niantic, the mastermind behind the augmented reality game, is trying to get something done the opposite way. Niantic is hoping to leverage the massive user base of the game to improve AR-powered 3D mapping of real world locations.
According to a report, Niantic CEO John Hanke said that the company was looking for the players to build out the game board they wanted to play on. Putting it straight, Niantic would make use of the smartphone camera of the players to capture data as they play games, and this very data would be used to map contours and objects in the scene to generate 3D maps of the locations.
Niantic would apply the data for enriching the in-game experience, and that would be by constantly updating the surroundings across all smartphones and players. But Niantic’s aspirations don’t end there. Instead, they would also be made available for third-party developers, who could better develop AR powered maps using the gathered data.
Recently, Google has demonstrated its AR powered navigational feature inside Maps during its I/O conference. Developers could follow the same track, but with better resources.
As of now, there’s no info on when the data collection would be kick-started, or precisely how it would be executed on smartphone devices. Niantic had recently acquired Escher Reality startup to up its AR mapping activities, but that doesn’t give us an insight about how the process would work.
The only available information is that Niantic would initially begin the mapping process in public spaces like parks and plazas. Given that the device should be given access to continuous usage of camera, they better be prepared to settle down the possible apprehensions from the user end.