At CES 2010, extensive attention was paid to 3D televisions. Samsung was the first in mid-March 2010 when the C7700 LCD TV was the first 3D TV on the Dutch market. Yet this 3D hype did not last long; the biggest drawback was obvious that you need glasses to experience the content in 3D. This seems to come to an end in the future, possibly that Samsung will pioneer again.
On January 15, 2019, Samsung received a patent from the USPTO (the United States Patent and Trademark Office) for an interesting 3D display device. The patent entitled ‘three-dimensional display device and user interfacing method’ describes a 3D display device that is capable of displaying virtual 3D objects. Although the patent was submitted much earlier, the patented technology is very advanced.
It concerns a 3D television or a 3D monitor that can connect to a smartphone or tablet. The device also looks a bit like a 3D tablet. The three-dimensional display device can show different types of content, such as 2D / 3D videos or photos. But also, the rendering of 3D games is possible. Although the accompanying patent illustrations and the 3D renders produced by us display a flat representation, the content may also be presented in cube form.
Thanks to the use of a camera, the device can also create 3D content itself, for example, objects. The camera can recognize different types of objects so that the user interface is automatically adjusted accordingly and relevant information can be displayed, such as where the product is for sale.
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The camera can also recognize the shapes and colors of objects. This information can then be used for other types of content. As an example, a picture of a banana is made, and the yellow color of the banana is applied to a photograph of a street scene.
The user interface of the Samsung 3D TV
Unlike existing 3D displays, the Samsung patent speaks of a 3D user interface instead of 2D. This makes a much better and more accurate operation possible. Use is made of a detection sensor (such as an IR sensor or an ultrasound sensor) that can detect when contact is made with the virtual object in the 3D environment.
For the 3D display device operation, several possibilities are mentioned, think of touch operation but also operate via a touch pen.
The device can forward and receive information directly via your smartphone. For example, hold a video call via your smartphone. Then you can also show the person you are talking to on the Samsung 3D display. For example, if you share a music file with someone, it can be shown directly on the screen and played back.
Incidentally, both a stereoscopic method and a hologram method can be used. In stereoscopy, two photographs are used that together form a 3D image. Holography does not involve two separate recordings. Here a flat image is presented from different angles. The image does not exist, but using light in a certain way looks like a 3D image.
Whether or not Samsung will bring such a device to the market is awaiting. However, it is certain that Samsung is still exploring new possibilities for displaying 3D content. For example, last month we reported on a Samsung 3D hologram smartphone.