RED recently made a pretty big announcement: they’re entering the smartphone market. Whether that’s for good or bad remains unseen, but the company’s ambitions behind its first handset are pretty large. One claim the company made in the announcement was the world’s first holographic display on a smartphone. It was unknown at the time how they’d achieve such a feet, and now we’re hearing the camera manufacturer has partnered with a startup to deliver the experience.
Called Leia Inc. (like the princess in Star Wars), the startup actually focuses on “lightfield holographic display solutions for mobile devices” specifically. That’s pretty much what RED needs to deliver their claim, so at least on paper, this partnership is meant to be. As for specifics behind the company, it was founded out of HP’s experimental labs back in 2014 and has since evolved into a company who works on proprietary hardware and software to deliver holographic screens on mobile devices. “The Silicon Valley firm commercializes LCD-based mobile screens able to synthesize lightfield holographic content while preserving the normal operation of the display,” reads RED’s press release.
How this screen actually looks, however, isn’t known at this time. YouTuber Marques Brownlee was able to get an early look at the technology which he said looked “pretty good,” but it was admittedly buggy and there were some light bleeding issues that needed to be addressed. That being said, Leia did publish a concept of their holographic displays for mobile to YouTube back in 2015 so we can at least get a feel for what to expect when this crazy phone gets in the hands of consumers.
But what would holograms on a display offer for the user’s benefit? One possibility could be a city in Google Earth popping out of your screen, while games could also look pretty sweet as well. Of course, we’re really taking shots in the dark here, but these could be possibilities for what the screen offers over regular 2D screens.
RED’s Hydrogen One will go on sale next year for $1,200.