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  • Writer's pictureAnders Olofsson

Introducing iOS LiDAR (November 2020)

Updated: Sep 11, 2023

Lidar 3D scanners are now included in the iPad 2020 models and in the iPhone 12 Pro. This is a game-changer for the 3D industry. There will be several benefits for many businesses in a broad range of industries. Below is some information about the tools I used for testing.

Hardware & software

1. Ipad Pro 2020

2. Polycam App ($55/y)

3. Laser measure.

2 min scan. Measurement accuracy 99%

Preparations before scanning

Plan your route before starting the scan. Open doors and ensure you have access to all areas. The best way to scan is to start in a corner. Try to stay between 1,5 and 3 meters from what you're scanning. Avoid scanning the same area twice. Avoid scanning mirrors and other reflective surfaces for a better scan. There are some good videos on youtube about scanning. A cool thing is that you can check your measurement accuracy instantly in the lidar 3D model.

How to scan

1. Start in a corner.

2. Avoid close-ups on monotone, flat areas.

3. Keep a distance of 1-3 meters between the Lidar and what you are scanning.

4. Move by internally circling the space you are scanning (image example below - red)

5. Scan up-side-down-side-up, and so on (See Scanning pattern image below).

6. Avoid scanning the same area twice

7. Avoid scanning windows, mirrors, and other reflective surfaces.

8. Prepare the space before you scan by opening doors and turning on lights.

9. Cover or remove photos or other private information you don't want to share.

10. Scan room by room, floor by floor, or an entire house depending on the accuracy needs.

Loop closure: Ensuring accurate and consistent 3D scans Scanning pattern: Like mowing a lawn.

Other things tested

Exteriors: Park, and pool area (combined here with the interior scans of the pool house and gym)

Roads and larger scenes

Summary and predictions

Low-cost and accessible LiDAR scanners in people's pockets will have a massive impact on several businesses that are capturing measurements and other data as part of their operations today. It will help companies visualize projects and save time on material calculations, and more. Many new businesses will emerge in the 3D field and I predict a similar transformation in the 3D field as we have seen in the photography profession since the introduction of cameras in phones.

Our company offers flexible and reliable solutions for 3D digitalization and reality capture with decades of experience in the field.

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