A few weeks ago, RED — a new smartphone company, had announced plans to make a $1200 smartphone called the Hydrogen One that will have a holographic display (read here). At the time of their revelation, RED only had a non-functioning prototype to tease. The world has since wondered about the technology that this display will utilise. If you were amongst that group, then worry no more as RED has now revealed the display technology to the world, courtesy a report from The Verge.
The holographic display will work on the principle of light diffraction. The display produces a light field illumination with a layer of nanostructures added to a conventional LCD. This is claimed to not lose on picture quality or power consumption.
To explain this in simple words, the display will throw up light in a manner that will let you see 3D images emerge from the screen. This would be of immense convenience (and fun) in scenarios such as using Maps on your smartphone where all the buildings will pop out for real and will even accept user inputs through various hover gestures.
If you were wondering how a pretty young smartphone company could develop such a technology, then you are actually right. The display has been developed by Leia Inc. — a spin-off startup from HP labs. Leia describes itself as “the leading provider of light-field holographic display solutions for mobile” and RED made a partnership with them to develop the holographic display on the Hydrogen One smartphone.
In an interview to The Verge, RED president Jarred Land says Brad Pitt and David Fincher are also impressed, for whatever that’s worth. However, RED says that it will have to work on exclusive holographic content for the smartphone so as to utilise the technology to its full limits.