How to create a drone-like fly-through with an iPhone NeRF


The iPhone app Luma AI makes it easy to capture NeRFs and edit them with camera paths, creating a video that would otherwise require a drone.

Luma AI is available in the iPhone App Store and makes it surprisingly easy to capture a NeRF. I simply circle an object three times at different heights, angling my iPhone toward the center.

The app takes care of the rest, uploading to Luma Labs’ servers, where their proprietary AI builds a neural radiance field for me. An ultra-smooth orbit around the NeRF can be downloaded as a video, and a 3D object with texture maps can be generated within a few minutes. You can also share the NeRF as an interactive web view so your friends can experience the location or the item you’ve captured.

As impressive as that is, it’s only the beginning.


Moving through the scene with AR

Luma AI captures the object you circle, but simultaneously records the background. When I first open the app, I see a gallery of NeRFs I’ve previously captured. Tapping any thumbnail will place you into the Cinematic Render view, which is usually a slow spin around the object.

Tapping the AR button at the top right places the NeRF within my physical space. I see either the extracted central object resting on my floor or the entire NeRF scene filling my room.

Tap the background button at the bottom right to switch between these views. It’s as if my iPhone is a window into the location I recorded the NeRF. Check out Luma Lab’s Twitter video, introducing the AR feature.

In my examples, I see the trees, moss, leaves, and rocks as I look through my phone. Also, I can walk around the inside AR sceneraise my iPhone or reach down to see from a lower angle. It’s as if I were back on the forest trail.

The quickest way to make a fly-through video is to press the record button at the bottom of the screen and start moving through the AR scene. I don’t have to worry about bumping into trees and crashing my drone. However, I must stay aware of my surroundings because my physical space doesn’t match the NeRF environment.


NeRFs will be a valuable tool for the metaverse, simplifying the creation of 3D objects and places. You can already view NeRFs in VR if you have a compatible computer and headset.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top