Evaluation of the Intel RealSense T265 for Tracking Natural Human Head Motion

Journal Article


Accurate and robust tracking of natural human head motion in natural environments is important for a number of applications including virtual and augmented reality, clinical diagnostics, as well as basic scientific research. IMU provide a versatile solution for recording inertial data including linear acceleration and angular velocity, but reconstructing head position is difficult or impossible. This problem can be solved by incorporating visual data using a technique known as visual-inertial simultaneous localization and mapping (VI-SLAM). A recently released commercial solution, the Intel RealSense T265, uses a proprietary VI-SLAM algorithm to estimate linear and angular position and velocity, but the performance of this device for tracking of natural human head motion in natural environments has not yet been comprehensively evaluated against gold-standard methods. In this study, we used a wide range of metrics to evaluate the performance of the T265 with different walking speeds in different environments, both indoor and outdoor, against two gold-standard methods, an optical tracking system and a so-called perambulator. Overall, we find that performance of the T265 relative to these gold-standard methods is most accurate for slow to normal walking speeds in small- to medium-sized environments. The suitability of this device for future scientific studies depends on the application; data presented here can be useful in making that determination.


Scientific Reports





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