It’s time for the annual Samsung Unpacked event prior to Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2018. The big announcement – that everyone was expecting – was for the new Galaxy S9 and S9 + smartphones. While there’s been no mention just yet of virtual reality (AR), augmented reality (AR) has made an appearance, with Samsung unveiling AR Emoji’s.
Very much in the same vein as Apple’s iPhone X announcement, Samsung’s AR Emoji’s allow users to create an emoji that looks, sounds and acts like them thanks to the new camera on the Galaxy S9.
As Samsung explains in a press release: “AR Emoji uses a data-based machine learning algorithm, which analyses a 2D image of the user and maps out more than 100 facial features to create a 3D model that reflects and imitates expressions, like winks and nods, for true personalisation. AR Emoji shares your real-life feelings not only in video but also with a range of stickers in uses a standard AGIF file format so users can share their emojis across most third-party messaging platforms.”
So with AR Emoji’s not only can you create your own digital character you’ll be able to use it on apps like Whats App or Facebook Messenger. Plus, Samsung has revealed a collaboration with Disney, bringing some of the company’s well known cartoon characters to the software.
Attendees also got to see another use of Galaxy S9’s AR functionality by pointing the smartphone at their badges, bringing up a digital model of the device which could then be flipped over to show the various colours the smartphone comes in.
In addition to AR Emoji’s, Bixby, Samsung’s intelligence platform, has been integrated into the camera, combining AR and deep learning technologies to provide helpful information about your surroundings. “With real-time object detection and recognition, Bixby instantly generates information directly on top of the image that the camera is pointing at. Users can translate foreign languages and currency in real time with Live Translation, learn about their surroundings, purchase products seen in the real world and track calories throughout the day,” states Samsung.
AR is set to be a big part of smartphones this year. Most recently Google announced the roll out of ARCore 1.0., bringing advanced AR features to Android devices.