Is Apple Making a Holographic 3D iPhone, iPad, and TV?
Posted on: 05/09/2012 12:22 AM

In December of 2010, a patent filed by Apple suggests the computer and mobile giant has been working on a new type of display screen that produces 3D and even holographic images without the need for glasses.

This technology could be used to produce a new generation of televisions, computer monitors and cinema screens that would provide viewers with an even more realistic experience than the glasses-free 3D displays already on the market. The system relies upon a special screen that is dotted with tiny pixel-sized domes that deflect images taken from slightly different angles into the right and left eye of the viewer.
By presenting images taken from slightly different angles to the right and left eye, this creates a stereoscopic image that the brain interprets as three-dimensional.



Apple also proposes using 3D imaging technology to track the movements of multiple viewers and the positions of their eyes so that the direction the image is deflected by the screen can be subtly adjusted to ensure the picture remains sharp and in 3D. If you watched "Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol" then you might remember them using this same technology in the hallway to distract the guard.

Theoretically, this means images would appear to be holographic because of the ability to track the observers movements. It proposes using "holographic acceleration" – where the image moves faster relative to the observers' own movement so they would only need to walk in a small arc to see all the way around the holographic object.

The patent states: "An exceptional aspect of the invention is that it can produce viewing experiences that are virtually indistinguishable from viewing a true hologram.
Such a "pseudo-holographic" image is a direct result of the ability to track and respond to observer movements. By tracking movements of the eye locations of the observer, the left and right 3D sub-images are adjusted in response to the tracked eye movements to produce images that mimic a real hologram. The invention can accordingly continuously project a 3D image to the observer that recreates the actual viewing experience that the observer would have when moving in space around and in the vicinity of various virtual objects displayed therein. This is the same experiential viewing effect that is afforded by a hologram. It allows the observer, for example, to move around a virtual object and top observe multiple sides from different angles."

This technology could be the breakthrough for 3D, because it does not uses special filters or glasses. These screens could replace the LCD displays of almost all consumer electronics available. Remember, Apple is also rumored to come out with a full TV… could this mean fully integrated 3D and holographic content across all Apple devices? Just imagine being able to push a holographic image from your iPad to your TV and then to you desktop iMac!

Leander Kahney, an author at the Cult of Mac, said:
"As well as watching 3D movies, Apple's system would have a ton of applications in science, engineering, design and education, while 3D iPhones and iPads would be killer.
"It's easy to imagine things like amazing 3D textbooks and instructional videos. 3D gaming on an iPad would be an incredibly immersive gaming experience."

IF YOU SKIPPED OVER THIS ENTIRE ARTICLE LOOKING FOR PICTURES, AT LEAST READ THIS: This patent was filed over 2 years ago. The patent process also takes at least 12 months. So, if Apple applied for this patent in 2009, they also would have had to have a quite seriously developed product already. This means that to date, Apple may have 5 or 6 years of development already into this product! We could be right around the corner (Apple's WWDC conference this June, maybe?!) from the most revolutionary product since the LCD display.

Apple does not comment on patents. Ugh.


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