Here’s a unique musical contraption combining a variety of smart phones. My favorite part of this instrument is the portable speaker at the base of the “guitar.” Classic.
…or should I say neo-classic?
Japanese electronics-giant Sharp recently unveiled an LCD touchscreen that displays 3D images without requiring special glasses. Sharp identified mobile phones as a potential outlet for this technology, and this week announced the first 3D camera to be used in mobile devices.
In a press release, Sharp explained how its 3D technology works:
“3D images are composed of two views taken using two cameras that simultaneously capture separate images for the right and left eyes. Consequently, a 3D camera requires peripheral circuitry to apply image processing to the two images, for example, to adjust color or to correct positioning between the images from the two cameras.”
The glasses used to view 3D images have lenses with colored filters. This creates the illusion of something popping off the screen known as parallax. The left and right eyes see separate images because of the apparent displacement of an object as seen from two different points.
The reason 3D technology did not successfully gain widespread use in the 1970s was because technologists failed to create a 3D user experience without the need for funky glasses. In order for parallax to work without glasses on mobile, viewers will hold a mobile device 12 inches (30 centimeters) in front of their face – approximately the same distance a mobile phone is typically held.
Sharp plans to ship the cameras as soon as July, and will begin mass-producing the product this year. Could we be on the verge of capturing and presenting eye-catching 3D images and video with our mobile phones? It’s an exciting prospect.
How will 3D content change our mobile experience?
Three-dimensional imaging technologies are changing the way we experience media, first in movie theaters, now in our homes, and soon in our hands. If 3D cameras become standard in our mobile devices, a wave of new content would contribute to the refinement of the technology.
Here are five ways we’d like to see 3D cameras and imaging for mobile applications:
1. Games. (Did we hear someone say Nintendo 3DS?)
2. Data charts and interactive surveys. Information architecture in 3D would be amazing.
3. Product previews for smaller items like jewelry could change the way we pop the question.
4. 3D profile pictures and video chat.
5. Navigation and maps with pop-up landmarks to guide viewers along.
What are some of your ideas for 3D imaging in mobile applications? Tell us what you’re thinking in the comments section.