Toshiba Rumored to Launch Glasses-Free 3D Notebooks in 2H11

Call it a passing fad, a worthless technology designed to drive up movie theater ticket prices, or the greatest thing to happen to entertainment since the Two and a Half Geeks podcast, but whatever your view on the recent 3D frenzy, we can all agree that the dorky looking glasses need to go. Nintendo proved it could be done with the successful launch of the 3DS handheld console, and the next logical step for glasses-free 3D displays would be notebooks. That's exactly what Toshiba is working on, and rumor has it the company will release a line of 3D laptops that don't require glasses in the second half of 2011.

This would be a significant development if Toshiba can pull it off that quickly. Companies like Acer, Asus, Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Lenovo, MSI, and even Toshiba have all launched 3D notebooks, but all them require the use of either active shutter or passive polarized glasses, a major turnoff to anyone who isn't ultra committed to 3D.

Current 3D notebooks, like this one from Toshiba, require the use of special glasses. Toshiba plans to change that in the second half of 2011 by releasing glasses-free 3D laptops.

Toshiba's upcoming notebooks will use the company's in-house developed integral imaging technology. Integral imaging produces multiple rays of light projected at different angles and is said to cause very little eye fatigue, even after long periods of use.

"This display is achieved by using a lenticular lens sheet on a high-definition LCD panel. This method uses images from nine directions to create one 3D picture," Toshiba explains. "Technically, this is called a nine-parallax 3D image, and there are nine pixels underneath each lens. This creates a 3D perspective by enabling each pixel to be observed through the lens from a different direction."

Would you be interested in a 3D notebook if it didn't require any special eye gear, or is it still too gimmicky?