The ability to create avatars has been around for sometime, but more recently more platforms have provided this ability to create them. Facebook being one of the latest to introduce a create an avatar based on some standard forms that you can then modify to your nearest look. This has caused a recent splurge of posts on the social media channel as everyone is keen to show off their new avatar.
Some people find using an avatar more comfortable than using their real picture
Other systems use a photo of yourself either uploading or taking a selfie to create your avatar and try to make the avatar more realistic to you.
Most avatar systems are based on a set of generic shapes and colour choices. One of the challenges with using a fully custom avatar in channel where the avatar is an active part of the actions, such as in Virtual Reality and Gaming is the downloading and rendering of the images. Multiple versions of avatars may have an impact/slowdown on a system as it tries to cope with the additional images and polygons to render and process.
I have brought some of my avatars together below to show the different types. These are by no means a comprehensive list of avatars, but a sample of whats available.
In brining these together the differences in how the systems either see me or allow me to interpret my face and features. There is quite a difference across all the systems.
Ready Player Me
The avatar from Ready Player Me is my latest one and create as I needed a virtual version of myself for a virtual experience. Running the web page from your PC/Laptop or phone and take a selfie or use an existing photo creates an avatar that you can then change appearance and colour on.
The output is a .glb file that can be used in creating virtual environments.
The avatar from spacial produces a floating version of yourself using a photo of your face using this as a skin to the model. Out of all my avatars this is the most realistic, but is platform specific.
The Samsung Avatar runs on a Samsung phone (Using an S9 to create these). Taking a selfie you can create a set of AR Emojis/stickers for use in your social channels. It creates a avatr that you can then customise.
Using the facebook avatar creator within the Facebook application you can choose from a number of face shapes and skin tones to set your initial version that can then be customised to be as near as it can to your image.
The X-Box Avatar is built up from a standard avatar set that you can then customise the look. This was the nearest I got to myself using the platform.
There are lots more platforms out there that you can set and customise your avatars in. For me there is a lot of variation in the avatars and only a couple are near realistic for me. The others are good fun though.
The future may see the option to standardise on a set of avatars. Until then happy avataring.