Apple exploring multilayer transparent OLED displays for glasses-free 3D computing

“Apple has shown interest in creating a new type of display with multiple transparent layers, offering the ability to display a three-dimensional image without the need for glasses,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider

“The details come from a new patent application published this week by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, entitled ‘Multilayer Display Device.’ Discovered by AppleInsider, the document describes a display that has individual layers driven by separate graphics processors,” Hughes reports. “Apple’s solution is a multilayer display system that could be driven by multiple transparent organic light-emitting diode screens, or OLED. The use of multiple transparent screens would allow for layers in an image, creating visual depth for users.”

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Hughes reports, “Last year, a separate filing showed that Apple had tinkered with the idea of holographic displays that also would not require users to wear glasses. And it has even explored a multi-camera system for taking 3D pictures with an iPhone.”

Read more in the full article here.


  1. May it never come to pass. 3d Stereoscopic techniques are a complete fad, with absolutely no measurable benefit, and plenty of potential drawbacks.

    For Apple to jump on the bandwagon would be very reactionary, aka skating to where the puck is. This has not been their style in the past, and I hope it remains that way.

  2. Interesting. So whereas at the moment we look at screens face on and count DPI, we may in future look at screens from above and count LPI – Layers Per Inch.

  3. It’s way too late,of course, but I throw my hat into the ring anyway and condemn the expression “3D”. The so-called technology is only simulated 3D and should have been dubbed 2.5D when it was invented.

  4. Something like this is what will be needed to push Apple into the TV business… something that’ll set them apart. Can’t wait for 3D without glasses to become the norm.

  5. Novelty.

    How about developing a 3-D GUI first? Something with more than merely shadows and transparency please. The technology has been here for years! Put it to work Apple!!!

  6. This is a nice idea but there is already a company: which created devices using this semi-3D technology. Looks like they already own all the patents for it as well. It will be very interesting to see this in a handheld device because it doesn’t require glasses or a special viewing angle like the Nintendo 3DS and all the other 3D mobile phones. It could further set Apple apart if they manage to secure the patent (however doubtful, since PureDepth appears to own the idea already) and build this display which nobody else can copy!

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