Computer giant Apple, the company behind the iPod and iPhone, is working on a next generation 3D technology for TV and movies that does away with its biggest problem – 3D glasses.
Most current 3D technologies require viewers to wear glasses that allow the right and left eye to see slightly different images to produce the illusion of depth on the screen.
The Apple 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, reports the Telegraph.
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.
A patent recently granted to Apple, however, has now sparked speculation that it may even go further than 3D domain by offering the chance for holographic films.
But holographic movies would require new filming techniques, different from the one currently used by the movie industry to ensure actors are filmed from multiple angles.
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.
The Apple patent claims this technology would also create images that appear to be holographic because of the ability to track the observers movements.
It 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.”
Leander Kahney, consumer technology expert and author of the book “Cult of Mac” said: “If Apple cracks the technology, it could help make 3D the dominant display technology. It certainly does away with the biggest problem – the 3D glasses.”