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Home / News / Next Big Thing – Microsoft transparent 3D screens

Next Big Thing – Microsoft transparent 3D screens

Yes it’s like Minority report, yes it’s real, and yes we want one too

What’s this then? You have to use your hands?

Yes but not in the traditional keyboard and mouse sense only. In a Minority Report style this Microsoft project uses a transparent Samsung OLED screen, combined with overhead cameras to track your movements. This all means it can render a 3D holographic environment that you can virtually touch.

Why does it film you?

The cameras allow the screen to project perspective, so as you move your head the viewing angle changes and you can see the various sides of the 3D object. The cams also track your hands so you can, for example, flick through apps like a Rolodex and pinch to chose the one to open.

Very cool, does it have a future?

This was a Microsoft Applied Sciences project from last year so it could be making its way into homes soon. Imagine placing a magazine under the screen and it being brought to life through augmented reality, or using the screen as a fridge door and seeing the price of everything inside and easily ordering more. We’re looking forward to playing a virtual guitar.

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Profile image of Dan Grabham Dan Grabham Editor-in-Chief


Dan is Editor-in-chief of Stuff, working across the magazine and the Stuff.tv website.  Our Editor-in-Chief is a regular at tech shows such as CES in Las Vegas, IFA in Berlin and Mobile World Congress in Barcelona as well as at other launches and events. He has been a CES Innovation Awards judge. Dan is completely platform agnostic and very at home using and writing about Windows, macOS, Android and iOS/iPadOS plus lots and lots of gadgets including audio and smart home gear, laptops and smartphones. He's also been interviewed and quoted in a wide variety of places including The Sun, BBC World Service, BBC News Online, BBC Radio 5Live, BBC Radio 4, Sky News Radio and BBC Local Radio.

Areas of expertise

Computing, mobile, audio, smart home