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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Heliodisplay -- Interactive Free-Space Display


By: Steve Bralovich

Computer and TV Video With No Screen

Science-Fiction meets reality with this new video display technology.

The Heliodisplay includes patented and patent pending technology to transform normal ambient air and display video images into free-space. Some Heliodisplay models are interactive allowing a finger or hand to move images around in the air as if one were grabbing a tangible object. (continued...)

The Heliodisplay requires a power outlet, and a computer, TV, DVD or alternate video source. The current version of the Heliodisplay projects a 22' to 42' (depending on model) diagonal image that floats above the device.

The Heliodisplay system is backward compatible and accepts most 2D video sources (PC,TV, DVD, HDTV, Video game consoles). For connection to a computer, the Heliodisplay uses a standard monitor VGA connection; for TV or DVD viewing, it connects using a standard RGB video cable.

Interest in this new technology has been so strong, that curious visitors have crashed IO2Technology's website.

Obvious Applications :
  • Advertising and Promotion, e.g.: trade shows; in-store displays; museum, movie and casino displays; theme parks.
  • Collaborative Decision Making, e.g.: board meetings and presentations; command and control; architectural and engineering design; teleconferencing.
  • Simulation & Training, e.g.: virtual targets; pre-operative planning.
  • Consumer, e.g.: video games; home theatre.


  • Less Obvious Examples:
  • Transparent teleprompter.
  • Heads-up displays in new fields.
  • Build one into a door jamb and have a walk through image or virtual privacy screen.
  • An in-store end cap advertising display and demonstration through which the customer can reach and grab shown product.
  • Build the Heliodisplay into furniture, e.g. project from desk.


  • While the new video capability will doubtless usher in a new era in computing and home entertainment, I wouldn't rush out and buy one just yet. That is, unless of course you have a burning desire to part with some extra cash in hurry.

    I haven't seen the system in person, so I can't say for sure, but the old computer axiom of "Never buy version 1.0 of anything." probably applies here.

    Odds are that the price is out of line for most people. Also, all the kinks in the system are probably not perfected yet.

    I get this impression because IO2Technology is taking only limited orders right now. This tells me that the company has limited production capacity and is not fully prepared for demand. They probably haven't sold enough units yet, to account for all possible systems and usage scenarios. So for now, I'd steer clear of a buying one.

    Still, the announcement is impressive because it is bound to create another era of "Star Trek" type innovations and change some of the ways that we react with our computers and televisions.

    Visit The Heliodisplay Website

    Discuss The Heliodisplay On The PDA Forum