Intel stops developing RealSense cameras

Intel will stop developing its RealSense cameras and sensors. The products are intended for computer vision applications such as scanning indoor spaces for robots or recognizing users.

An Intel spokesperson tells CRN that this will end its portfolio of RealSense cameras and sensors. The company says it will continue to honor its current agreements with customers, but it will close the responsible division and use the employees for other core activities of the company.

The closing of the RealSense part is probably due to the small sales numbers. CRN cites a US distributor who says he is not surprised. He indicates that it is a niche product and that large numbers were not sold.

Intel showed a variety of demonstrations of various RealSense technologies at multiple CES editions. In 2015, for example, there was a demonstration with drones from Ascending Technologies. The drones were equipped with Intel’s RealSense cameras. Because Intel’s camera system was equipped with an infrared function, among other things, the systems could scan the environment, allowing the drones to evade objects and people. In the end, it often ended with such demonstrations and not many actual RealSense products came out. Consumers didn’t queue for it either.

RealSense LiDAR Series Products

One of the most recent RealSense hardware products to be released by Intel was the separate RealSense ID modules with facial recognition. These modules have depth and infrared sensors and a secure element so that users can use them for biometric authentication. Previous RealSense applications could also be used for Windows Hello.

At the end of 2019, Intel announced the RealSense LiDAR series. These cameras were intended, among other things, to provide indoor robots with in-depth information about the immediate environment. Intel combined this depth information via the laser pulses with images from an RGB camera, supplemented with data from an accelerometer and a gyroscope. These RealSense products have their own processor to process images. As far as applications are concerned, healthcare, logistics and robotics should be considered.

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