Qualcomm, the company which manufactures the Snapdragon chipsets that power a majority of Android devices has announced a new Depth-Sensing camera technology which will be available for all the Android devices. This technology is a part of the company’s Spectra Module program.
The technology will make way for better biometric authentication as well as better depth-sensing. This means that the facial recognition unlocking that is present on the Android devices will improve a great deal once this technology is deployed on the Android smartphones.
Qualcomm says that the technology has been made available keeping in mind the growing demand of the Virtual Reality content in the mobile devices around the world. The announcement from Qualcomm is also interesting as the next iPhones from Apple are rumored to feature enhanced cameras which can capture depth accurately for Augmented Reality.
Talking about the newest additions from Qualcomm’s Spectra Module program, the company has announced three major addition. First of all, the module will include an iris-authentication front facing option which was seen in the Galaxy Note 7 and is currently available for the Samsung Galaxy S8 for unlocking the device with iris.
The other additions to the module are Entry-level Computer Vision kit and Premium Computer Vision kit. Both of the Computer Vision kit modules will be used for Depth Sensing capabilities where the Entry-level kit will be used for Passive Depth Sensing which is done after the image has been captured whereas the Premium Computer Vision Kit will have Active Depth Sensing which means that the camera module will be able to capture the depth information in real time. This newest addition from the company is a part of Qualcomm’s revamped architecture for image-signal-processing also known as ISP.
As mentioned earlier, the Premium Computer Vision Kit, which is capable of Depth Sensing in real time is the most interesting feature addition out of the three additions that have been done to the Spectra Module program from Qualcomm. Qualcomm has also posted a video of the Premium Computer Vision Kit’s Active Depth-Sensing capabilities and the technology is considered a breakthrough in the field of Virtual Reality as far as the Android devices are concerned.
Qualcomm has also explained the working of its Active Depth-Sensing Premium Computer Vision Kit. The Kit has an illuminator, IR camera, and a 16MP or 20MP camera. The illuminator fires a light creating a pattern of dots which is then detected by the IR camera. These dots help in determining the distance between the subjects by calculating the distance between the dots. Also, this depth-sensing technology works even at night due to the use of infrared light to calculate distance.
Talking about the deployment of this technology on the Android devices, Qualcomm has said that the company expects this technology to be available on the smartphones running Qualcomm chipsets starting next year.