AR Startup Streem Acquires UK Computer Vision Startup Selerio to Mesh Up its AR Teleconferencing Software
Augmented reality startup Streem which specializes in remote video assistance or teleconferencing solutions is about to give its software platform a leg up with an infusion of a new computer vision technology from the UK-based AI startup Selerio.
Streem has just announced its acquisition of Selerio which is also working with augmented reality technologies. The new technology will enable the AR startup to have occlusion and object recognition for augmented reality apps. The acquisition will enable the meshing of teleconferencing tech with computer vision tech and is likely to give Streem a leg up in an increasingly competitive remote assistance marketplace.
Both startups are graduates of the BetaWorks’ VisionCamp accelerator program. They had met under this program and entered into a collaboration while still working on their respective computer vision solutions in the augmented reality space.
Streem hopes that with the meshing of the two technologies, the startup will be able develop a new ramped up version of Skype call that will make it possible for the home service providers to collect more visual data when they will be chatting with the homeowners. This could take various forms. The service could be as basic as a character recognition solution that allows users to simply point their phones instead of having to recite its 30-characeter simple number. The service could also enable home service providers to perform measurements or save localized notes.
So far, Streem has racked up over $10 million in funding and the company has also recently closed a new round of funding although the details about that round have not yet been divulged.
Selerio, the UK startup, develops solutions that focus on gaining the contextual understanding of spaces. The startup grew out of a Cambridge University research and while the company has not yet disclosed its seed finding amount, it has been backed by some key names including BetaWorks, GGV Capital, Greycroft Partners among others. All the three senior employees at the UK startup will now join Streem following the acquisition.
Streem has more than 20 employees and raised $6.8 million in December 2018. In December 2017, Streem also announced a funding round of $1.7 million. The Portland-based startup offers a video conferencing platform that leverages both computer vision and machine learning to allow remote experts to annotate the camera view of a user and provide remote assistance by guiding remote users on the installations or troubleshooting of home appliances.
The Selerio technology, on the other hand, provides a construction of real time meshes of visible environments through the use of connected cameras. By leveraging on these meshes, Selerio-equipped apps can apply occlusions to augmented reality scenes and also help in the identification of objects within the camera view. Selerio released the Software Development Kit (SDK) for its platform in December 2018.
Remote video support is already a fairly crowded field with players such as Scope AR, Atheer and Re’flekt providing remote video support platforms. There are also augmented reality cloud services such as 6D.ai, Niantic and Ubiquity that provide occlusion solutions. The ARKit 2.0 augmented reality development platform also provides support for object recognition. The merging of the Streem and Selerio technologies could give the company a significant edge in an already crowded market.