Apple Has Acquired Danish Startup Spektral, Focused on Real-Time 'Green Screen' Technology

MacRumors

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Apple has acquired Danish computer vision startup Spektral, according to a paywalled report from Danish newspaper Børsen.


Spektral has developed a technology that can intelligently separate people and objects from their original backgrounds in photos and videos, and overlay a new background, resulting in what is called a "cutout." The solution is driven by deep neural networks and spectral graph theory.

The technology can be thought of as real-time "green screen" processing powered by machine learning algorithms:
Our pioneering and unique technology is based on state-of-the-art machine learning and computer vision techniques. Combining deep neural networks and spectral graph theory with the computing power of modern GPUs, our engine can process images and video from the camera in real-time (60 FPS) directly on the device.
The report says Apple acquired Spektral, formerly known as CloudCutout, in late 2017. Spektral co-founders Henrik Paltoft and Toke Jansen, who now lists himself as a manager of computational imaging at Apple, are said to have received 200 million Danish krone, or roughly $30 million as of today's exchange rate.


Spektral's website notes that its solution makes it possible to create unique and immersive mixed reality content. Apple could incorporate the technology into the default Camera app on iPhone, or Messages, or Clips, or use the technology in bigger ways as it continues to push into augmented reality.

Spektral was founded in 2014 and raised $3.3 million in venture capital prior to its acquisition by Apple, according to Crunchbase.

Article Link: Apple Has Acquired Danish Startup Spektral, Focused on Real-Time 'Green Screen' Technology
 

Scooz

macrumors 6502
Apr 9, 2012
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isn‘t that already doing its thing in portait mode in the X‘s cam?

Or will it be driving the „twice as good“ upcoming version?
 
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mazz0

macrumors 68000
Mar 23, 2011
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Couldn't they already be using this in the XR's portrait mode? That's using software to separate the foreground and background, which is what the software above describes, without depth values.
 

T'hain Esh Kelch

macrumors 603
Aug 5, 2001
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Denmark
isn‘t that already doing its thing in portait mode in the X‘s cam?

Or will it be driving the „twice as good“ upcoming version?
They might be buying the company primarily for patents or to make sure they weren't bought by competing companies, and then likely got some good skilled people along.
 
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FunnelDog

macrumors member
May 4, 2015
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I've been saying for years that Ray Bradbury's "The Happiness Machine" refers to the iPhone... (Does it fit in your pocket? Or do you fit in it?)

Now I'm further convinced that projectors and this technology combine well to meet his thoughts written in "The Veldt."

This probably deserves its own thread because I can think of many other RB references that are true today beyond the generic "robots are taking over" connections.

QUOTE="MacRumors, post: 26641923, member: 3"]


Apple has acquired Danish computer vision startup Spektral, according to a paywalled report from Danish newspaper Børsen.


Spektral has developed a technology that can intelligently separate people and objects from their original backgrounds in photos and videos, and overlay a new background, resulting in what is called a "cutout." The solution is driven by deep neural networks and spectral graph theory.

The technology can be thought of as real-time "green screen" processing powered by machine learning algorithms:The report says Apple acquired Spektral, formerly known as CloudCutout, in late 2017. Spektral co-founders Henrik Paltoft and Toke Jansen, who now lists himself as a manager of computational imaging at Apple, are said to have received 200 million Danish krone, or roughly $30 million as of today's exchange rate.


Spektral's website notes that its solution makes it possible to create unique and immersive mixed reality content. Apple could incorporate the technology into the default Camera app on iPhone, or Messages, or Clips, or use the technology in bigger ways as it continues to push into augmented reality.

Spektral was founded in 2014 and raised $3.3 million in venture capital prior to its acquisition by Apple, according to Crunchbase.

Article Link: Apple Has Acquired Danish Startup Spektral, Focused on Real-Time 'Green Screen' Technology[/QUOTE]
 

Kabeyun

macrumors 68020
Mar 27, 2004
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Eastern USA
This is fantastic! Masking is something I frequently want to do with my shots and something which I find very challenging, even after trying it with a number of commercial masking apps. I don’t know if Spektral’s product is high quality, but I’m loving this acquisition.
 
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code-m

macrumors 68000
Apr 13, 2006
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This technology can be useful not just for animoji and portrait mode but in Final Cut and of course all kind of AR Apps.

And as you can remove background then you can remove foreground and create totally false pics and movies so welcome in fake reality.
The tech already exists to make fake yet highly convincing photos, videos and audio of famous figureheads.

The lines are blurred from reality to virtual. Many don’t have the attention span to pick out the illusion and it’s becoming ever so challenging. Only our true selves know, unless we convince ourselves otherwise.
 

wigby

macrumors 68000
Jun 7, 2007
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Couldn't they already be using this in the XR's portrait mode? That's using software to separate the foreground and background, which is what the software above describes, without depth values.
Yes except portrait mode is not video. This company uses AI to create cleaner mattes used specifically for real time video. This acquisition is more about FaceTime, iMovie, FCP and future AR endeavors.