Food photography is a surprisingly tricky business. You’ve got the classic ‘my Big Mac looks nothing like the sumptuous feast on display in the ads’, but on the other hand, you’ve also got ‘why does this photo of Szechuan beef look like it was shot on the set of an 80s porno?’
Well, this new startup is looking to solve this problem, by embracing augmented reality.
Kabaq promises that users will “experience an interactive, 360 view of each dish; see correct portion size; visualise ingredients; and be presented with complimentary (sic) food items”.
The technology at use is photogrammetry, whereby an object is photographed from various angles so as to make a 3D model, which then allows users to view it from a full 360 degrees.
The business idea is to sell the technology to restaurants, who then allow their customers to see potential dishes – using the Kabaq app, available for free on both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store – in all their glory before making a decision as to what they’re going to order.
Caner Soyer and Alper Guler are the pair behind the idea, with the idea coming about when the two friends were working on their first startup, which was an AR real-estate platform.
“Caner posted a picture on Facebook and told me that he used photogrammetry to create the realistic (although it didn’t look too realistic back then) 3D model,” Guler told YourStory.
“The same day, DJ Smith, founder of the New York Virtual Reality meetup group, called and asked if we had any AR/VR work related to restaurants for New York Food Loves Tech event. We prepared and presented an initial demo of Kabaq at the event.”
Guler, who is of Turkish heritage, said he hoped their app would help people to become more adventurous when they are at more exotic eateries.
“Most of the time, I choose food items I am familiar with. Hopefully, Kabaq will help people like me choose food in ethnic restaurants,” he said.
Oh, and for the record, the name Kabaq comes from the Turkish word Kabak, which means zucchini.