Fujifilm announces 3D digital photo system

Wow, those balloons look, like, totally real, dude
Wow, those balloons look, like, totally real, dude

Sometimes two dimensions just aren't enough. So when you're being attacked by a shark, standing close to an arrow in flight or merely being pointed at by someone with a big finger, reach for your Fujifilm FinePix Real 3D camera.

The new system uses twin lenses and matching CCDs to capture and record stereoscopic images. According to Fujifilm, "a newly developed chip called the 'RP (Real Photo) Processor 3D' synchronises the data passed to it by both CCD sensors, and instantaneously blends the information into a single high quality image, for both stills and movies."

Watch where you're pointing that cucumber

The problem with previous 3D cameras has been viewing your images, so full marks to Fujifilm for creating a 3D digital photo frame and new 3D print technology, announced today at Photokina.

The 8.4-inch, 920,000-pixel FinePix Read 3D Photo Frame has a 'light control direction module' that provides separate images for your left and right eyes, giving a 3D effect without special glasses.

The 3D print uses a fine pitch lenticular sheet overlaid on a standard inkjet print, a bit like the scratchy 3D postcards that were so popular in the 1980s.

Sadly, Fujifilm hasn't announced an actual 3D camera just yet, but seems keen to tout its Real 3D system to mobile phone manufacturers, so watch out for 3D picture messaging in years to come...

Mark Harris is Senior Research Director at Gartner.