iPad 3D: tablet makers look to a 3D future

Meanwhile, over at Computex, Asus has just unveiled the Eee Pad MeMo 3D. This Honeycomb alternative sports a 7-inch parallax barrier no-glasses 3D display with a resolution of 1280 x 800. As a point of difference it bundles a stylus, so you can use it as a digital notepad. However, Asus is banking on 3D games, movies and photos to be a big draw.

Eee memo

ABOVE: The Eee Pad MeMo

HTC has already gone glasses-free 3D with the HTC Evo 3D smartphone. Next step: a 3D HTC tablet? Not really a big leap of the imagination is it?

The home entertainment angle

The pressure to take tablets into the third dimension will be compounded as the slate market shifts on its orbit and becomes part of the living room entertainment experience.

All the major 3D TV vendors are planning home entertainment tablets, positioning them as secondary, personal TV devices. Soon content will flow seamlessly from one to another - and with all decent tellies soon offering 3D compatibility does it really make sense to keep tablets two dimensional?

The expert's view

Sky's Chief Engineer and 3D evangelist Chris Johns has no doubt about the potential, and user appeal, of auto-3D. "I don't think the technology is there for bigger sets," he told us when we ambushed him at a DTG tech briefing, "but I can't see it being very long before the major tablet manufacturers are delivering some form of 3D offering that you can download to."

The man from Sky believes that auto-3D is destined to become the de facto way of watching 3D on smaller screens.

"When I first saw the Nintendo 3DS screen I was wowed," he admits. In fact, Johns was so impressed by Nintendo's parallax barrier screen that he offered Ninty codec support, plus 3D content if needed.

"It'll be interesting to see how Apple reacts to the increasing number of mobile products which are adopting auto-3D," he told us pointedly.

Indeed it will.

Steve May
Home entertainment AV specialist

Steve has been writing about AV and home cinema since the dawn of time, or more accurately, since the glory days of VHS and Betamax. He has strong opinions on the latest TV technology, Hi-Fi and Blu-ray/media players, and likes nothing better than to crank up his ludicrously powerful home theatre system to binge-watch TV shows.