(Not an Apple or Flyby Media-affiliated VR headset.)Reuters
Apple has bought another startup that specializes in the world of augmented and virtual reality, as reported by The Financial Times.
Flyby Media will presumably aid Apple's efforts in developing for virtual reality, but its tech also has applications for everything from indoor mapping to driverless cars.
Here's a look at what its technology can do.
Flyby is best known in the tech world for powering Google's Project Tango, a 3D motion tracking initiative intended to help mobile apps understand their relation to physical space.
Google made a splash with the announcement of Project Tango last summer. At the time, project chief Johnny Lee said in an interview, "We're developing the hardware and software technologies to help everything and everyone understand precisely where they are, anywhere."
It's unclear how or if Flyby's tech will continue to play a role in Project Tango now that it's owned by Apple. (We're going to guess the answer is an almost-definite no.)
Flyby's tech is all about tracking the 3D motion of an object and has been applied to indoor mapping, an area Apple is certainly interested in.
Flyby uses a combination of "cutting-edge computer vision, inertial sensing, and Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) technology" to know where a device like a smartphone is in physical relation to its surroundings.
It's already worked on implementing that tech to create floor plans for use with Apple Maps, which would help the app's little blue dot tell you where you are more precisely in somewhere like a crowded mall. It could even know when you pass a specific display in a store, like the shoes section, and label it as such.
The core of its tech is called "VFusion" and can track "drone and car-based systems at distances of up to 10 miles."
The Flyby team joins a growing stable of VR and augmented reality experts at Apple who are clearly building something big.