Possibly coming soon: 3-D selfies, brought to you by Snapchat

If adding animal ears to your selfies or swapping your face for a friend’s ever gets old — don’t worry. Snapchat may have something new in store.

Rumors are swirling that Snapchat has plans to unleash 3-D selfies on the world, after TechCrunch reported the photo messaging platform acquired a San Francisco-based 3-D imaging startup.

Snapchat acquired Seene a few months ago, according to TechCrunch, but has kept quiet about the deal. Seene’s specialty is mobile-based 3-D, and the company’s website says its technology can turn a standard smartphone into a 3-D scanner. The technology uses the phone’s regular camera to map a person or an environment, and then turns that information into a 3-D image. It works on faces (hence the 3-D selfie speculation) and objects, and can even reconstruct an entire room in 3D.

Seene’s technology also can be used to enhance images in other ways that could be useful to Snapchat, which relies heavily on its photo capabilities for the success of its entire platform. Seene allows users to refocus photos after they’ve been taken, according to the website, and adjust the depth of photos.

Of course, the technology has broader implications than merely spicing up your selfies. Seene’s 3-D imaging can be used to let PlayStation and Xbox gamers turn themselves into an avatar to be inserted into their favorite video game, according to the Seene website. It also has implications for 3-D printing and could be used for virtual reality experiences.

Photo: Models take selfies before the start of the Bogota Fashion Week at the National Museum in Bogota, Colombia in May 2016. (AP)

Video: Seene high resolution 3-D facial capture. (Seene)


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