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This $30 screen protector creates 3D views on a smartphone without the glasses

Lucid / Holotech

Can a simple screen protector deliver 3D content without the glasses — or the expensive holographic smartphone? Lucid and Holitech think so. The Holoscreen is a smartphone screen protector that allows users to view 3D content without the glasses inside an app. The $30 accessory functions as a normal screen protector outside of the 3D app.

When viewing 2D content outside the app, the companies say that the screen protector doesn’t alter the usual smartphone screen, serving as just the usual thin-film style screen protector. The 3D images and video, on the other hand, are sharp and appear to almost pop out of the screen, according to Holitech and Lucid.

The app will allow users to view 3D content, as well as allowing some devices to capture their own 3D content. Lucid’s software Andromeda will be used to capture 3D content on some midrange devices. Lucid says the software was scaled down to into a lighter version, allowing the software to run on smartphones without high-end processing chips. The version also uses less battery.

Both the app and the screen protector sizes will be compatible with iOS and Android. 

Lucid / Holotech

“While the 3D and VR/AR industry were struggling with the burden of wearing glasses and headsets as well as the lack of content, there is now this new wave of high-end smartphones coming which makes immersive content consumption and creation as simple as ever,” Han Jin, CEO and co-founder of Lucid, said in a statement. “Such simple solutions as the screen protector are essential to create a bridge between the state the industry is in right now to where 3D and VR/AR are going. It completely removes the friction for consumers.”

Besides creating a 3D effect without the glasses, the Holoscreen also serves as a typical screen protector, helping prevent scratches and cracks. Expected to price at around $30, the Holoscreen could help bring 3D content to older or less expensive devices, provided the smartphone is still compatible with the app.

The Holoscreen won’t be available until the second half of 2019, but the 3D screen protector is on display during Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, this week. Those interested in the Holoscreen can sign up for updates at its website. 

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