What Is ToF – Time O lf Flight Camera Technology – Advantages and Disadvantages

Xiaomi’s product director Thomas long text chat about TOF technology, from the principle, device composition, advantages and disadvantages analysis and application scenarios several dimensions of hardcore science, but also released the Xiaomi MIX 3 early support TOF technology Pre-test prototype.

Wang Teng said that TOF technology has the advantages of long working distance, wide application range and high distance accuracy, but there are many disadvantages. For example, the current mainstream ToF sensor available on the mobile phone has a relatively low resolution (180*240, 240*). 320, 240 * 480, etc. , so the accuracy and X / Y resolution in the close range will be relatively low, the power consumption and heat generation of the components during operation are relatively large, the application scene is less and so on.

Wang Teng said that we recognize that this is a big industry direction – based on 3D information, we can do a lot of exploration in the future, and invest in R&D resources. Last year, Q3 based on MIX3 made a pre-test prototype and tuned to complete functional verification, but based on resolution. Low, limited application scenarios, etc. decided to continue to do pre-research, and no mass production was introduced.

Finally, Wang Teng Thomas said that he hopes to present it to everyone at a suitable time in the future with a more complete user experience and real user value.

Xiaomi Mix 3 - ToF Camera Supported Prototype
Xiaomi Mix 3 – ToF Camera Supported Prototype

ToF – Time of Flight Camera Technology

Talk about TOF, taking into account not to waste everyone’s time, the length of the text as much as possible to control the short and popular, there is a need to elaborate on the comments we put in our comments or post.

From the principle, device composition, advantages and disadvantages analysis and application scenarios, the following dimensions:

1, TOF principle: In fact, it is not complicated. The laser emitter emits a light pulse. After encountering an object, the light will be reflected. The captured light passes through the captured time, which is the time of flight. The object and lens can be judged by simple formula calculation. Distance between (Figure 1)

ToF - Time of flight
ToF – Time of flight

2: TOF component: The main component consists of three parts: the light source (here the laser emitter), the lens and the photosensitive element. (Figure II)

ToF - Time of flight
ToF – Time of flight

3, several advantages and disadvantages of the ToF program (mainly compared to the other two mainstream 3D solutions, see Figure 3)

ToF - Time of flight

Advantage 1: First, the working distance is long, and the effective & real-time depth information within 5m can be obtained;

Advantage 2: Wide application range, no matter whether the object has feature points or not, whether the ambient light is strong (such as: daylight) or weak, effective depth of field information can be obtained;

Advantage 3: The accuracy of the long distance is high. The absolute precision of the ToF in the mobile phone and the object, that is, the relative precision between the objects, can reach the level of centimeter.

Disadvantage 1: The current mainstream ToF sensor available on the mobile phone has a relatively low resolution (180*240, 240*320, 240*480, etc.) , so the accuracy and X/Y resolution at close range will be relatively low. Interested in knowing the accuracy of the pre-structured light;

Disadvantage 2: The power consumption and heat generation of components are relatively large at work. Long-term work requires good heat dissipation conditions, and it needs to be continuously optimized for use on consumer electronic devices.

Disadvantage 3: At present, the solution based on ToF solution is not fully mature, and the corresponding content production and development groups are weak, and the supported application scenarios are few.

4, the main application scenarios of TOF

TOF has some applications in the industrial field, for example:

In the logistics industry, the hot robot, TOF is applied to the robot to help identify the object, can be used for auxiliary packing, box packing, box stacking, box marking and so on.

At present, the OPPO R17pro is the first to be listed on the mobile phone. It is limited by the accuracy and power consumption mentioned above. There are not many applications. Of course, OPPO is also trying to do it without the main promotion, and even the official website has not introduced it.

Now I see the mainstream in the industry in two directions: applications based on depth perception, such as AR special effects games, ranging, 3D modeling, etc., in addition to biometric recognition based on 3D information, such as: TOF face recognition instead Front structure light.

The imaginable space is large but it takes a step by step to solve various problems and develop corresponding applications.

5, finally said the progress of Xiaomi, we recognize that this is a big industry direction – based on 3D information in the future can do a lot of exploration, and invest in research and development resources in the last year Q3 based on MIX3 pre-study prototype and transfer completed functional verification, but Based on the reasons of low resolution and limited application scenarios, it is decided to continue the pre-research, and no mass production has been introduced. We hope to present it to you at a suitable time in the future with a more complete user experience and truly bring user value.

Source

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.