Although other devices have been able to turn smartphones into 3D cameras, the group claims this is the first software that allows your phone to make 3D images. You can compose a shot just like you would a 2D image, but must move around what you’re photographing, taking many shots, so the camera can capture it from different angles, adding depth to the picture. The software then compares distances from the different viewpoints, and builds a life-like image.
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“Depth, texture and shape are at the present creative variables that you can play with to make what you capture look more interesting,” Andrew McPhee, Obvious Engineering CEO, told Mashable.
The images are shareable, but Seene photos won’t embed in a text or tweet. Instead, you can send image links, which McPhee said are viewable in most browsers. just a few sites, such as Tumblr, let you embed them directly.
Though you can somewhat alter the angle from which you view a Seene image, you can’t move the focal point from the center of the original photo to, say, the back left or right corner. That’s something you can do with pictures taken by some 3D cameras, such as those built by Lytro.
“For us it’s about making images interactive,” Topher Martini, a technology evangelist at Lytro, told Mashable. “I think what it takes for strong, 21st-century storytelling, is adding elements of depth perception. I think the benefit of computational photography is to enhance experiences.”
Martini declined to comment on whether Lytro plans to move into the smartphone market, and McPhee didn’t comment on whether Obvious Engineering plans to give Seene images the ability to change focal points. But they both agreed that the world will soon see a lot of more 3D photos.
“A lot of our users have told us that when they go back to viewing 2D photos they now want them to respond to their interaction,” McPhee said, referring to how you can view a 3D photo from a different angle with the flick of a finger. “Expectations evolve quickly, and never go backwards.”
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