How to become a 3D avatar in virtual reality

VisionLabs managing director: "We simplified a very complex technology, turned it into a toy and put in your mobile phone."

VisionLabs managing director: "We simplified a very complex technology, turned it into a toy and put in your mobile phone."

Alamy/Legion-Media
VisionLabs, the Russia-based visual recognition company, will help people teleport into virtual reality with its new app. Face.DJ can create high quality 3D face models with real skin texture and color just by using a mobile phone.

Humans are one step closer towards teleporting into a crazy world of gaming and virtual reality. In a matter of seconds you can now turn your face and body into a photorealistic 3D avatar with Face.DJ, a new technology developed by the Russian company, VisionLabs.

The app was presented at TechCrunch Disrupt 2017 in New York City, and is now available globally in the App Store.

"This is the first technology that can build high quality face 3D models with real skin texture and color without special expensive equipment," said Alexey Nekhaev, managing director of VisionLabs, during an interview at Disrupt 2017. "One selfie is enough to build a high quality avatar, and users can do this with their mobile devices. We simplified a very complex technology, turned it into a toy and put in your mobile phone."

VisionLabs managing director: "We simplified a very complex technology, turned it into a toy and put in your mobile phone." Source: Face.DJVisionLabs managing director: "We simplified a very complex technology, turned it into a toy and put in your mobile phone." Source: Face.DJ

 

VisionLabs' developers had to manually analyze huge amount of facial recognition data to make the app available for the mass market. Face.DJ only creates 3D face models but users can put it in a virtual robot, choose hair and sunglasses. The avatar can be used on social networks such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

Face.DJ detects prominent facial parts, such as eyes, lips and nose. Then, it customizes a 3D model of the face, tailoring it to an individual's facial shape, and maps texture from the photo into the avatar.

The app was created for the gaming market, but the company is now in talks with major U.S. tech corporations that are interested in integrating Face.DJ into their products.

The app was created for the gaming market, but the company is now in talks with major U.S. tech corporations that are interested in integrating Face.DJ into their products. Source: Face.DJThe app was created for the gaming market, but the company is now in talks with major U.S. tech corporations that are interested in integrating Face.DJ into their products. Source: Face.DJ

"Gamers spend a lot of time and effort personalizing their characters and creating a virtual personality," Nekhaev  said. "We also see great potential for our technology in the fashion industry, medicine, security and other areas that require character personalization and animation."

Face.DJ won't be available on Android until September.

VisionLabs ranks as one of the world’s three top face recognition technologies, according to independent benchmarks by the University of Massachusetts.

The company is now partnering with the ICQ messenger to develop interactive masks for video calls. Equifax, a U.S. consumer credit reporting agency, is using the Russian company LUNA's face recognition software for banking fraud prevention.

Read more: Russian casinos are betting big on new face recognition technology>>>

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