Facebook researching advanced mobile AR and VR with full body tracking

If you've used an Oculus Rift headset, or sent a Facebook Messenger sticker, you'll be fully aware of Facebook's ambitions in both the virtual and augmented reality spheres. But new research shows it's still looking for new ways to impress in the areas where the digital and real worlds merge.

In a blog post, Facebook revealed that it is looking into ways it could not only overlay digital elements onto your face, but replace and track your entire body, whether in AR or VR scenarios.

“We recently developed a new technology that can accurately detect body poses and segment a person from their background. Our model is still in research phase at the moment, but it is only a few megabytes, and can run on smart phones in real time,” the researchers from Facebook's AI camera team explained.

Big ideas, low power

It's that last bit that's perhaps the most interesting element here – the fact that Facebook can get its body tracking tech to work with little memory, using only smartphone imaging and processing tech, is impressive.

It's not unique technology, but the efficiency is worth applauding, if it works consistently well. And the fact that Facebook is using neural networks to build on the reliability of the tracking means that, in time, it could continue to improve dramatically. 

With the team also hiring in this field, don't be surprised if you're soon sending full-body AR outfit clips to your pals through Facebook's apps.

Via: TechCrunch

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Gerald Lynch

Gerald is Editor-in-Chief of iMore.com. Previously he was the Executive Editor for TechRadar, taking care of the site's home cinema, gaming, smart home, entertainment and audio output. He loves gaming, but don't expect him to play with you unless your console is hooked up to a 4K HDR screen and a 7.1 surround system. Before TechRadar, Gerald was Editor of Gizmodo UK. He is also the author of 'Get Technology: Upgrade Your Future', published by Aurum Press.