US: The US Patent and Trademark Office awarded US Patent No. 8,624,974 B2, entitled ‘Generating a three-dimensional model using a portable electronic device recording’ to Apple. The concept describes using a portable device, such as an iPhone, to record video or photos of an area. That collective information could then be used along with other crowdsourced media to render an object or location in three dimensions. In this case, Apple could essentially crowd-source the capturing of street-level images to end users, allowing for thorough and up-to-date information in its Maps application.
The recording can be simultaneously tagged with the output of the motion-sensing component, positioning information, or both to define the spatial relationship between video frames of the recording. The video can then be processed to generate a three-dimensional model using the images and spatial relationships. Any other electronic device can then load the generated model and allow the user of the other electronic device to navigate the three-dimensional model.