Nintendo to launch 3D-capable DS handheld

23. März 2010
Nintendo is planning to launch a new version of its handheld DS gaming device on which users can get the illusion of 3D without using special glasses, it said Tuesday.

The device, provisionally called the 3DS, will be launched in Japan before the end of March 2011, the company said. No further details were provided, but Nintendo said it would disclose more information at the upcoming E3 gaming event. E3 is scheduled to take place in Los Angeles from June 15 to 17.

3D has emerged as the latest big trend in consumer electronics and most major TV makers are planning to launch 3D TV sets this year. Those sets display two slightly different images, one for each eye, and glasses are required so that each eye sees the appropriate image and the brain is tricked into perceiving depth in the picture.

An alternate way of achieving a 3D effect is to place a filter directly in front of the display panel that consists of thousands of small lenses. The lenses focus each image to a fixed point in space and the viewer gets the 3D illusion as long as they are watching from that position. It has the advantage of not requiring glasses but restricts the viewing angle and typically means only a single person can see the 3D effect.

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