3D cameras are evolving in the ecosystem, and smartphones should benefit from their lower cost in the near future. Researchers have developed a low-cost version of 3D cameras with Lidar technology that can be equipped with smartphones.

We’ve already seen what Lidar cameras can offer, thanks to Apple using the technology for its iPhone 13 Pro models, which also improves the reliability of the TrueDepth camera used for Face ID scanning. And soon, most mainstream smartphones will be able to offer similar functionality to premium devices.

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Stanford University researchers are working on perspective image sensors that can measure distances using light, which Lidar technology helps develop 3D images. The use of Lidar on the camera sensor also plays an important role in improving the overall quality of night or low-light photography.

But unlike the feature used by Apple, which is expensive, these researchers are focused on creating a low-cost sensor that does more or less the same thing.

Offering an affordable solution means more phone makers can consider using the technology for products the masses can buy. Integrating Lidar with a normal sensor is a challenge, but these researchers are looking to crack the code and make it work through regular camera sensors, which carry high megapixel counts, and they believe the range of Lidar will increase as the size of the sensor increases. .

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In addition to the performance of lidar for 3D imaging, this camera also improves the overall security of the device through biometrics. So it’s possible that this low-cost lidar sensor will democratize Face ID-like security for other smartphones, which invariably provides a refreshing design perspective for phone makers.

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We can’t wait to see if this technology moves beyond the research labs and makes its way to the final product soon.

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