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Apple’s new iPad Pro has a lidar scanner for AR

Press Release 18 Mar 2020 - 21:36 SAST

Apple’s new iPad Pro has a lidar scanner for AR

Press Release 18 Mar 2020 - 21:36 SAST

Information from Apple

The new iPad Pro adds an ultra-wide camera, studio-quality mics and a lidar scanner for depth-sensing, enabling professional workflows and supporting professional photo and video apps. The lidar scanner, along with pro cameras, motion sensors, performance, quality audio, the Liquid Retina display and apps, makes the tablet an ideal augmented reality (AR) device.

The lidar scanner enables measures the distance to surrounding objects up to 5 metres away, works both indoors and outdoors, and operates at the photon level at nano-second speeds. New depth frameworks in iPadOS combine depth points measured by the lidar scanner, data from both cameras and motion sensors, and is enhanced by computer vision algorithms on the A12Z Bionic for a more detailed understanding of a scene. The integration of these elements enables new AR experiences on the iPad Pro.

Every existing ARKit app automatically gets instant AR placement, improved motion capture and people occlusion. Using the latest update to ARKit with a new Scene Geometry API, developers can harness the new lidar scanner in new ways.

The liar scanner improves the Measure app, making it faster and easier to automatically calculate height, while helpful vertical and edge guides automatically appear to let users measure objects. The app also now comes with Ruler View for more granular measurements and allows users to save a list of all measurements, complete with screenshots for future use.

The camera system features a 12 MP wide camera for capturing photos and 4K video, as well as a 10MP ultra-wide camera that zooms out two times to capture a much wider field of view. Adding a second camera allows more photo and video possibilities, enabling different perspectives and multi-camera use.

Other features include trackpad support to iPad, a new Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro and an A12Z Bionic Chip for demanding tasks like editing 4K video or designing 3D models. The tablet has a battery life up to 10 hours, Wi-Fi connectivity and gigabit-class LTE.  The Liquid Retina display (in both 11-inch and 12.9-inch sizes) offers wide colour for vivid detail.