Augmented reality startup Magic Leap has acquired the 3D scanning division of Dacuda, a Zurich-based software company. Dacuda is known for its pocket scanner, Slam Scan Technology, as well as its smartphone software development kit (SDK) that can be used to turn virtually any smartphone into a 3D scanner. Dacuda’s 3D scanning tech has opened up possibilities in a range of applications, perhaps most notably in virtual and augmented reality.
According to a post on Dacuda’s website, its 3D division is now operating fully under Magic Leap. The statement reads, “Dacuda successfully sold its 3D division to mixed reality leader Magic Leap. The complete Dacuda 3D team joins Magic Leap to form its first European presence. The office in Zurich allows Magic Leap to further extend its leadership role in computer vision and deep learning technologies. Magic Leap Switzerland is led by Dacuda founder Alexander Ilic.”
As the startup specifies, Dacuda’s 3D software employees are now working under Magic Leap, as the entire Zurich-based division will form Magic Leap’s first European operation center. With the sale of its 3D division, Dacuda says it is now going to focus primarily on its “Productivity Solutions,” which include customer oriented software solutions.
The confirmation of the acquisition comes after a week of rumors, in which sources speculated that the sale to Magic Leap had occurred. Tom’s Hardware, for instance, pointed out that Dacuda 3D division employees had changed their employment on LinkedIn to Magic Leap, and Dacuda CEO Peter Weigand said in a statement that the company was divesting its 3D scanning assets and had chosen an “American high technology company” to leverage its 3D technologies.
As of yet, there is no official word on how exactly Magic Leap will use Dacuda’s 3D scanning technology, though it seems likely it will be used to advance the former’s augmented reality headset technology, which we are all eagerly awaiting! So far, Magic Leap has raised $1.4 billion in funding from such companies as Google and Alibaba, though they have yet to turn out a product. Magic Leap has been notoriously tight-lipped about its technology and work.
The company’s expansion in Europe, and specifically Switzerland, could be significant as well, as the country has become a hub for AR/VR tech companies and research. For example, researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich have been working on real-time mobile 3D scanning in association with Google’s Project Tango.
Dacuda’s Slam Scan Technology is based on an algorithm that enables the construction of 3D objects in real time. Its other notable product, the PocketScan, holds the title of being the world’s smallest wireless scanner and was brought to production through a 2014 Kickstarter campaign that raised half a million dollars.
Posted in 3D Scanning