Microsoft shows off its holographic sunglasses.

MicrosoftHologram

Microsoft Research's new prototype demonstrates how "high contrast, high resolution, and full color digital holograms can be formed using existing hardware devices, yielding images that more closely match the quality of conventional displays."

A new eyewear prototype from Microsoft Research hints at what the company's strategy for replacing the smartphone might be, ZDNet reports.

The set of sunglasses looks fairly normal, but it actually uses hologram technology to show an 80-degree view on the lens. That's "a width that usually requires headsets or helmet-sized displays," according to the website.

Microsoft explains: "Digital holograms are often associated with noisy, low contrast, low resolution, and mono color imagery. We demonstrate how high contrast, high resolution, and full color digital holograms can be formed using existing hardware devices, yielding images that more closely match the quality of conventional displays."

Microsoft stated that the project "is not necessarily indicative of any Microsoft product roadmap, but relates to basic research around holographic displays."

But ZDNet notes that the prototype emerges "as the company hunts for a smartphone-killer." Microsoft executives have suggested that they want to reinvigorate the "smartphone" concept with something that doesn't resemble current phones at all.

Read more at ZDNet

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