[...] here is a prediction—Apple devices will soon project holograms like you’ve never seen. This is not mere speculation, but insight based on Apple’s patents, recent acquisitions, and the business imperative to do something to break free of the tablet clutter.
In November 2010, Apple patented a three-dimensional display system that would “mimic a hologram” without requiring special glasses. The patent narrative is fascinating, noting that one current market gap in screen technology is the ability of a device to project stereoscopic 3D images to multiple viewers at the same time.
Under this patent, the virtual items in this 3D space can include nearly any object that can be grasped and manipulated within the virtual space, including sheets of paper, hand tools, paint brushes, pencils, pens, knives, scissors, etc. Any manipulation of these virtual objects or controls can also be further reinforced with audio feedback, such as clicking sounds for virtually rotating knobs, flicking switches, or pressing buttons.
Apple also proposes using 3D imaging technology to track the movements of multiple viewers and the positions of their eyes so that the direction the image is deflected by the screen can be subtly adjusted to ensure the picture remains sharp and in 3D. The patent claims this technology would also create images that appear to be holographic because of the ability to track the observers movements.
"As well as watching 3D movies, Apple's system would have a ton of applications in science, engineering, design and education, while 3D iPhones and iPads would be killer.
"It's easy to imagine things like amazing 3D textbooks and instructional videos. 3D gaming on an iPad would be an incredibly immersive gaming experience."