3D scanning, straight to your hands

In yet another example of Kinect software being used for 3D-scanning purposes, Silicon Valley startup Matterport has come out with a prototype product, modeled after the Kinect camera, which is able to scan rooms and provide 3D models in a matter of minutes.

Using depth sensors and an RGB camera, the handheld device scans and renders 20 times faster than similar scanners already on the market, according to the company’s founder. And while existing models are either larger or more expensive, the estimated cost of the Matterport product, once released, will be much much cheaper.

The implications of a product like this spreads across a variety of interests. Professionals in fields such as architecture, interior design, and real estate can use this product in many ways. Law enforcement officials might be interested in the scanner for helping to recreate crime scenes. And video game enthusiasts stand to benefit from games with improved graphics. Even the casual technology user might be able to use a scanner to create a panoramic video of a vacation spot to watch later or show off to friends.

What would you use a 3D scanner for?