While gamers worldwide are excited for the release of PlayStation 5, Sony seems to have some more creative ideas when it comes to console gaming. In the year 2017, Sony applied for a patent for a ‘holographic display screen’ at USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) which has now been granted. As the name suggests, the patent refers to a display that can project 3D lifelike objects.
Surprisingly, users of Sony’s holographic display don’t need to wear any 3D glasses which is unlike most other 3D solutions that are currently available. Not only can such glasses restrict the movement of the user, but they might even feel uncomfortable when used for longer periods of time.
— Push Square (@pushsquare) October 2, 2019
How Will it Work?
According to the patent, this technology will work by harnessing at least one display and plural pixel elements. At least one of these pixel elements will include a light emitter which will work with several movable micromirrors to reflect light in various directions and create an image for the viewer.
To create a 3D image, eye-tracking is implemented by use of an external sensor, which sees this light modulated so that the left and right eyes each receive different images – meaning you don’t need uncomfortable 3D glasses.
This makes it possible to experience PlayStation games as a 3D hologram and to play via your trusted DualShock controller.
Sony Alpha cameras are known for their eye-tracking technology, Eye AF, which the company has also used in its Sony smartphones – so it makes sense that Sony would seek to repeat the trick elsewhere.
In addition, facial recognition is also discussed in the patent, which would allow the technology to decipher how many people are actually viewing the screen, along with the ability to recognize facial gestures such as blinking or head moving – adjusting the image as needed. If that’s not enough, the technology should even be able to detect how far you’re sitting from the screen.
Sony already has many years of experience with hologram technology. 10 years ago, the Japanese manufacturer already showed a 360° holographic display prototype at the Digital Content Expo 2009 in Tokyo. This device is demonstrated in the corporate video below.
It’s likely we could see this new technology brought to the PS5 (as it’s compatible with Sony consoles), however it’s possible we could see it on Xbox Project Scarlett and Nintendo Switch too. This makes it possible to experience PlayStation games as a 3D hologram and to play via your trusted DualShock controller. Incredible right?
But the possibilities don’t stop there, as the Microsoft (Xbox) and Nintendo (Switch) consoles are also mentioned as compatible devices. Moreover, the 3D screen may also be compatible with smartphones, virtual reality (VR) headsets and augmented reality (AR) headsets. The patent also describes the possibility of modularly connecting the screens to each other, ideal during a large game event.