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Philips WOWvx 3-D TV for In-Store Retail Ads

Wired News reports that a new line of 3-D televisions by Philips uses the familiar trick of sending slightly different images to the left and right eyes -- mimicking our stereoscopic view of the real world.

But where old-fashioned 3-D movies rely on the special glasses to block images meant for the other eye, Philips' WOWvx technology places tiny lenses over each of the millions of red, green and blue sub pixels that make up an LCD or plasma screen. The lenses cause each sub pixel to project light at one of nine angles fanning out in front of the display.

A processor in the TV generates nine slightly different views corresponding to the different angles. From almost any location, a viewer catches a different image in each eye.

Providing so many views is key to the dramatic results. With the Philips technology, viewers can move around without losing much of the effect -- one set of left/right views slips into another, with just a slight double-vision effect in the transitions.

The TV can also display standard two-dimensional images, close to HD quality. The uncanny 3-D illusion stops people in their tracks, as it's meant to. Philips is initially selling the 42-inch screens to retailers who will create 3-D ads to grab the attention of passing shoppers.

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