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Apple patent from 2010 tracks your eyes to give 3D illusion on screen

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Apple patent from 2010 tracks your eyes to give 3D illusion on screen
The short history of 3D on smartphones has not presented enough information to determine if there is a market for something that many consider to be a gimmick. 3D handsets in the States didn't blow everyone away and the 3D enabled LG Thrill 4G was named the phoneArena Best Budget Friendly smartphone of the year for 2011 which tells you that the price of the model continued to drop after launch. Of course, it is possible that the technology never goes any further than the filing considering that it was submitted in 2010 before the soft sales for the Nintendo 3DS, the LG Thrill 4G and the HTC EVO 3D showed that the public wasn't really interested in the third dimension on their mobile devices.

Apple's 3D technology, courtesy of Patently Apple

Apple's 3D technology, courtesy of Patently Apple

The problem with mobile 3D is that so far it has required the manufacturer to use a stereoscopic screen that can make one dizzy if viewed for too long of a period, or at the wrong angle. According to Patently Apple, the Cupertino based tech firm has patented a different technique for 3D imaging that does not require a stereoscopic display. The technology uses features found on most smartphones like the accelerometer, GPS, compass, and gyrometer to come up with a precise point in space for the phone. Using the front-facing camera to track your eyes, the data is all jumbled together to present a 3D representation of what is on your screen. An app called i3D in the App Store uses a similar approach although not nearly as sophisticated as Apple's technique.

Apple's patent details how the UI of the mobile device can be used to enhance the illusion. For example, the drop shadows used on iOS icons can be adjusted and moved longer or shorter in real time to give the appearance of 3D. According to the patent, the 3D images can be "turned on" or activated with a gesture. While there was speculation last year that 3D imaging was a dead certainty for the Apple iPad 3, that report might be at least one year early. There could be demand for 3D support for some map functions and for some games, but for now, Apple will probably want to give this more time to perfect it and to gauge the demand.

source: PatentlyApple via Geek.com

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posted on 10 Feb 2012, 04:11 1

1. Fayeznoor (Posts: 65; Member since: 15 Nov 2011)


there are Eye Tracking software for android devices. most of them are in development stage.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=lVCpUmLinXM

but this is cool, activating 3D with 3D gesture is cool

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 09:43

4. tacohunter (Posts: 408; Member since: 06 Nov 2011)


@1 and 2 Not the same, read the patent first. it's more then simple 3D tracking.

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 06:03 4

2. andro. (Posts: 1936; Member since: 16 Sep 2011)


Android has been using 3d tracking software for ages now in the like of hologram live wallpaper and deep3d seen here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kE7fla-P0YA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pv8BixtR1gk&feature=related

This app has been on the market for about a year now but guess as usual apple 'invented' this technique and will claim to change everything if they eventually incorporate this stuff into their phone

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 12:17 1

5. gallitoking (Posts: 4682; Member since: 17 May 2011)


Andro your argument about already in Android don't cut it..Android didn't invented... either..and nowhere in the articles states that Apple invented it. so please if you are going to troll at least do it right... good for you guys that you have had it in Android.. Apple is different ... ok.. and is not who does it first.,.. is who does it better...

posted on 11 Feb 2012, 09:21 1

8. frydaexiii (Posts: 1176; Member since: 01 Dec 2011)


They didn't invent it, but they patent it which is basically telling the world "Hey, I invented this. Don't use it."

It's not who does it first, but who does it better? Than why is Apple sueing everyone who made a phone better than the iPhone?

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 09:40 3

3. TKFox007 (Posts: 303; Member since: 02 Nov 2010)


Oh cool another thing Apple stole and claim that only they made it themselves and no one else.

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 19:23

6. pongkie (Posts: 494; Member since: 20 Aug 2011)


Shocking!!!!!!!

posted on 10 Feb 2012, 23:43

7. Stuntman (Posts: 707; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)


Didn't I see this in Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol?

posted on 12 Feb 2012, 10:48

9. InspectorGadget80 (Posts: 6142; Member since: 26 Mar 2011)


So now their going to start suing companies that already have 3D camera phones like the EVO 3D?

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