April 21, 2009 - University of Southern California and Nokia Announce Extensive Research Collaboration Framework Agreement
April 21, 2009
First Project to Focus on Advancement of Augmented Reality
LOS ANGELES and Espoo, Finland (April 21, 2009) – The University of Southern California (USC) and Nokia Research Center (NRC) Hollywood today announced a research collaboration framework agreement that centers on advanced mobile user experiences. The umbrella framework agreement allows Nokia and USC to work together on multiple projects in a variety of areas and will streamline the process for commercializing USC inventions.
Nokia Research Center Hollywood, announced in November 2008, will focus on long-term research activities to further strengthen Nokia’s leadership position in the convergence of Internet and mobility. Building on NRC’s history of successful collaborations with leading universities, this new lab will further leverage the creative talent and experience in the media, entertainment, and new technology companies in the region. USC is the first university to enter into a collaborative research agreement with NRC Hollywood. The USC Stevens Institute for Innovation facilitated the licensing transaction. Financial terms were not disclosed.
The first project under this agreement with USC will focus on the advancement of Augmented Reality. Augmented Reality (AR) supplements a user’s view of the real world with three-dimensional computer graphic objects, providing a real-time, interactive and intuitive means of accessing and displaying spatial information. Where virtual reality immerses a user completely in an artificial world, augmented reality lets that user go about normal life, seeing the real world with additional information superimposed on it. For example, a tourist might be visiting a street in London and could see information about a pub they are walking by, or what's on sale inside the store across the street.
AR is a key technology in enabling advanced mobile user applications. In this initial project, USC and Nokia will focus on new vision-based AR tracking and content recognition techniques, adapted for use on mobile platforms.
“While there is no limit on future applications for augmented reality experiences on mobile devices, the enabling technologies behind complex augmented reality are still in the research stages. It’s a great opportunity to work with visionary companies like Nokia that are investing in breakthrough research in visual recognition techniques for use on mobile devices,” said Ulrich Neumann, professor in the Computer Science Department in the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California. “It’s exciting to work with Nokia as part of their commitment to advancing the science of interactive media.”
“USC’s history of excellence and expertise in science, engineering and the arts will greatly help Nokia in rapidly innovating advanced mobile user experiences,” said Rebecca Allen, laboratory director, Nokia Research Center Hollywood. “We are pleased to further NRC’s heritage of open innovation by working on research projects in collaboration with universities and research institutes around the world such as USC.”
"Our goal at USC is to advance the cutting-edge ideas generated in our academic environment and move them out to market, where those ideas can create a tangible impact on the way we live, work and play," said Joe Koepnick, Senior Director for Innovation Advancement and Business Development for USC Stevens Institute for Innovation. "In recognized world leader Nokia, we found a partner poised to help us meet this goal, by advancing the breakthrough research conducted at USC to make a dramatic difference in people's lives.”