Facebook has acquired a startup offering key ingredient for its augmented reality glasses. Scape Technologies, a London-based startup using computer vision to determine location beyond the capabilities of GPS alone. Its cloud-based “Visual Positioning Service” translates images into 3D maps that deliver a precise outdoor location across entire cities — important when one needs to know exactly where a store is on a street block.
The social network now owns a majority stake, and two of its executives now sit on Scape’s board of directors in place of venture capital representatives.
While it’s not initially clear what Facebook intends to do with scape, the AR glasses may be the best fit. Which could help navigate users around town simply by looking at the buildings. There are other potential uses, though, such as improving the accuracy of Facebook check-ins.