VentureBeat has previously covered Move AI, a UK-based company founded four years ago, specializing in a smartphone app capable of generating 3D motion capture models from standard 2D videos. This innovative technology challenges the conventional, expensive, and time-consuming method of 3D motion capture, which involves placing marker-like “ping pong balls” on a subject’s face or body and capturing them with specialized cameras.
Today, Move AI has announced that it secured $10 million in funding through a seed round, with investments from Play Ventures, Warner Music Group, RKKVC, Level2 Ventures, and Animoca Brands. Warner Music Group’s involvement indicates interest from prominent entertainment brands, signaling a potential use of Move AI’s markerless motion capture technology for music videos and new music performance experiences, including holographic presentations.
Tino Millar, Move AI’s co-founder and CEO, expressed the company’s mission to democratize 3D animation and make it more accessible to creators, leveraging the funding to achieve this goal.
Move AI currently offers an iOS app that requires users to position at least two smartphone cameras (up to six) around the subject. An experimental mode also supports Android devices and other digital cameras. Recently, the company adjusted its sign-up process, now requiring onboarding by a Move team member before accessing the app. They’ve also introduced custom pricing plans through a Move Pro subscription model.
In addition to these developments, Move AI plans to launch a single-camera app called “Move One” in September 2023. This app is currently in invitation-only beta testing, with access provided to prior users of the multi-camera app upon request. The public launch of Move One is anticipated later this year.
The rise of Move AI has significant implications for the entertainment industry, especially following recent industry strikes and disruptions. While 3D scanning and AI have traditionally been separate in Hollywood, Move AI aims to bridge this gap by using proprietary AI models to convert 2D video into 3D motion. This technology has the potential to dramatically reduce the cost of creating effects-driven content in various fields, making it more accessible to amateurs and aspiring creators.
However, there are concerns about potential misuse, such as studios using the technology to scan and reuse actors’ work without their consent or creating unauthorized captures of individuals. Nevertheless, with increased funding, Move AI is poised to make 3D motion capture more accessible to a broader audience than ever before.