SEOUL -- Recon Labs, a new startup that studies artificial intelligence related to augmented and virtual reality technologies, drew attention by securing seed money from three key domestic investors including a startup accelerator founded by Naver, a top web portal operator and IT company in South Korea. A service that converts photos and videos taken with smartphones into high-quality 3D models is under development.
The amount of seed funding stood at 500 million won (441,400) from Naver's D2 Startup Factory, Shinan Capital and Kakao Ventures, a startup investor of South Korea's web service company Kakao. Investors recognized the startup's technology, even though it has not even introduced its service. Seed money can be used to pay for market research and product development, and more investments can be made later.
"The effect of AR commerce, which can provide vivid online shopping experiences like offline, is already proving to be an indicator in the market," said Kakao Ventures head Kim Ji-woong. "Recon Labs will be a great choice for companies that want to build a highly complete and economical AR commerce system."
The startup's platform called "ASEEO" can drastically reduce time and cost for small companies which do not have much room to invest in new technologies. Based on photogrammetry algorithms, the platform provides a solution that can quickly and automatically convert photos and videos to optimal 3d models. Photogrammetry obtains reliable information about physical objects and the environment through the process of recording, measuring and interpreting photographic images and patterns of electromagnetic radiant imagery and other phenomena.
E-commerce companies can introduce AR commerce quickly and cheaply without specialized devices such as 3D scanning equipment. Recon Labs aims to release an official solution by the end of this year. However, there already have been business talks on cooperation with various companies in furniture, household appliances, home decoration and pet products brands.
"We want to create the AR service that consumers use the most through easy and fast technology," Recon Labs CEO Ban Seong-hoon said, adding he would target clients in the global AR commerce market with an automatic 3D modeling and AR conversion method that can overcome language barriers.
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