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U of M works with Google to create 3-D imaging smartphone

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Imagine a smartphone that can capture 3-D images of the space around you. It is now possible thanks to Google, Inc. and several other organizations, including the University of Minnesota.

The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal says the U of M's Multiple Autonomous Robotic Systems laboratory (MARS) has been working with Google's Advanced Technology and Projects Group on its recently-revealed Project Tango. The U of M's lab helped build the device.

Over the past year, Google has worked with the U of M, other universities, research labs and industrial partners from around the world to bring together research from the last decade of work in robotics and computer vision – the organizations brought it all together in a unique mobile phone, according to Google's ATAP website.

"The goal of Project Tango is to give mobile devices a human-scale understanding of space and motion," Google says on its website.

Google released a prototype of the smartphone to software developers earlier this month.

TechCrunch took a look at how people can use the smartphone to interact with the world around them and what it means for the future of phones. Watch it here.

The University of Minnesota is making the news frequently with its advances in technology, including a new, high-tech hybrid operating room.

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