Intel, Nokia: Help Us, Mobile 3-D Interface–You’re Our Only Hope
Another potential area of research could look into technologies that allow displaying a 3-D hologram of the person you are talking to on the phone, a capability only found in science fiction movies today. Consumers will feel more involved and engaged with their mobile experience than with current methods.
– Excerpt from joint Intel, Nokia press release
The stuff of science fiction today, immersive 3-D holograms may be just another smartphone feature in the world of tomorrow. If things work out the way Nokia and Intel hope, anyway. This morning the two companies announced a joint research center for 3-D interfaces for mobile devices. Located at the University of Oulu in Oulu, Finland, the effort will see about 24 researchers developing 3-D technology for mobile hardware running the Linux-based MeeGo OS Intel and Nokia announced at Mobile World Congress this past February. “3-D has the potential to revolutionize mobile and Internet user experiences,” Heikki Huomo, director of the University of Oulu’s Center for Internet Excellence, said during a media conference call.
“Potential” being the operative word here, because this is a long-term project, and the immersive mobile 3-D experiences–the “Star Wars”-style holographic messaging systems that the companies seem to promise–are still years away. Which makes the announcement today seem a bit desperate. Because, really, aside from the partnership itself, there’s no news here beyond the fact that Nokia (NOK), which is struggling to maintain its hold on the mobile space, and Intel (INTC), which is looking for a foothold in it, are working together to do just that. And we knew that already.