(Mirror Daily, United States) – It’s tough to tell how it will be used, but Apple bought facial motion capture company Faceshift, which has proven itself to be a major player in the futuristic technology. The details have not been forthcoming, in true Apple tradition. However, the rumors have come to an end and the transaction has been all but confirmed.
For months, it has been rumored that Faceshift was purchased by an unknown company. Several sources have hinted toward it, and the involvement of an attorney from Baker & McKenzie has nearly confirmed it, as the company is often known for working with Apple. It seems now that the tech company has officially acquired their third firm that is meant for developing facial motion capture technology.
Faceshift is one of them. They managed to design an incredible software that perfectly mimics the facial expressions into a 3D setting, using cameras and sensors. That means they have achieved their results without the reference markers often used for the same purpose. Essentially, those were points, like small stickers, placed on the person’s face so the software could understand their facial expression.
However, Faceshift has developed a way of doing it without the tiny markers. It’s one often used in movies using CGI technology, and gaming. For example, in CGI-heavy movies, it can be used to drastically improve the process of getting animated characters to mimic the actors’ expressions. It adds excellent authenticity.
For gaming, it could provide with quick, real-time and realistic animated avatars that would respond to the player’s facial movement.
Apple has now bought this exceptionally powerful technology, but it can only be estimated on what they will be doing with it. Perhaps they will be using it for gaming experiences, such as those on the Apple TV or their iOS devices. It could be a potentially alluring aspect for gamers to have their avatars mimic their facial expression during gameplay.
They could be using it to achieve more Hollywood-like effects for their software, programs, advertising, or anything else. Or, there is the possibility of Apple developing a new system-unlocking feature using facial recognition via FaceTime cam. Fingerprints are already in use for several models of smartphones for the purpose of security. Perhaps facial motion capture technology could gain a place in the same field.
However, the results will likely not be seen for a while, no matter the use Apple chooses. For now, they have only made the mention that they “buy smaller companies from time to time”. So, the purpose behind the purchase might be a while away from being revealed.
In the meantime, anyone who will be watching the upcoming ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ will be enjoying the results of Faceshift, used for the alien-looking characters in the highly-anticipated motion picture.