AAPL Stock: 112.12 ( + 2.62 )

Printed from

Glasses-free 3D comes to the iPad 2

updated 05:55 pm EDT, Mon April 11, 2011

Technique only uses head-movement tracking

Researchers in France have developed a technique for showing 3D on the screen of an iPad 2 without glasses and, more interestingly, without need of the accelerometer. The technique is based entirely on "head-tracking," or using the movements of the user's head as picked up by the front-facing camera, essentially turning the iPad's camera into a basic Kinect-type device -- which could have great implications for future 3D gaming on iOS devices with front-facing cameras, MacStories reports.

The demonstration video (below) was created by Jeremie Francone and Laurence Nigay of the Laboratory of Informatics at the EHCI Research Group. The monocular 3D effect is easy to see in the video and easily shows off a spatially-aware display that could be used in a variety of ways, including (as seen at the end of the video) an expanded desktop. Other possibilities include previewing 3D renders in CAD program, adding depth to artwork such as comic books, and of course improving the gaming experience.

A fuller implementation of this technology could take away one of the few advantages of Nintendo's latest portable gaming console, the 3DS, which also uses glasses-free 3D. Apple could conceivably implement the technology at the system level or as an API, bringing 3D gaming to future iPod Touch and iPhone devices. [via MacStories]

by MacNN Staff



  1. Cronocide

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Oh Yeah!

    Pack that up into a framework and give it to Apple for Christmas!

    Actually, nevermind, that's not a good idea.

    Send it to ME for Christmas!

  1. snork

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Lame...Johnny Lee did the same thing with a Wii back in 2007 while being just a college student. This is a blatant rip-off, they even used the same grid w/ the floating bulls-eyes.

    Also FYI, Mr. Lee got a job offer @ M$ and worked on the Kinect development.

  1. DeezNutts

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Its not 3D like the 3DS or the movies

    Its just manipulating a 2D image that was crafted to give the look of depth. Not that any 3D effect is "real" but both your eyes are seeing the same thing here. You aren't going to get a 'popping out' effect from this technology.

    Sure it looks cool, as someone else said Johnny Lee did this in 2007 on the Wii and it looks like these guys did a bang up job of ripping off his work!

  1. Meovv

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not a!

    This is very different from Johnny Lee's trick, which was also brilliant. Lee required that he mounted the Wii sensor bar onto the viewer's head.

    These guys use the front-facing camera to analyze the viewer's eye position which is completely different.

    The grid with the bull's eyes is just a relatively simple way to illustrate the effect. Using that is just as generic as using a rotating cube or a set of rectangles. Hardly a "blatant rip-off"...

  1. eldarkus

    Joined: Dec 1969



    So youre stating that using a camera to track head movement and using a sensor to track head movement is 2 different things? Sounds like the exact same concept to me..

    Also note that it's not tracking eye movement.. it's tracking head movement.

    But if you dont find this to be a rip off of Mr Lee's work, then how about the PS Eye, which uses head tracking as well?

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Polk Hinge Wireless headphones

Polk, a company well-established in the audio market, recently released a new set of headphones aimed at the lifestyle market. The Hin ...

Blue Yeti Studio

Despite being very familiar with Blue Microphones' lower-end products -- we've long recommended the company's Snowball line of mics ...

ZTE Spro 2 Smart Projector

Home theaters are becoming more and more accessible these days, but maybe you've been a bit wary about buying a home projector. And h ...


Most Commented