Monday, 23 November 2009

3D in your pocket ?

Conoscopy is the technique which might just bring 3D displays on pocket devices. It's a trick that steers the illumination from the backlight to light up left and right eye parts of the screen. It has been demonstrated on 9 and 2.8 inch LCD panels with LED backlighting, by tape manufacturer 3M. Why? Well because the screen employs a special thin film which does the steering of the light. Because the whole screen is used for each eye's image, there is no loss of resolution. The resulting screens also need no glasses to be worn by the viewer. By applying a single image to the 3D display, it will also show normal 2D images without distortion.

The issue with all 3D displays in terms of mass adoption is not the technology which makes it possible but rather the availability of content in the form required to drive them. Eventually we will see 3D displays, and the most common implementations will differ for different categories of device (e.g. TVs or handheld devices). A thin film approach to steering backlights may well be one of them.

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