CES: LG touts a tablet, glasses-free 3-D TVs and mobile screens, and cheaper 3-D glasses


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LG touted a tablet computer, a glasses-free 3-D mobile DTV set and a 4.3-inch glasses-free 3-D display for mobile devices at CES on Wednesday.

Skott Ahn, LG’s chief technology officer, flashed the small mobile DTV with a glasses-free 3-D screen before a crowd for less than a second during a news conference at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.


LG officials didn’t offer even a glimpse of its tablet computer, but told a packed room of reporters and bloggers that they would unveil it Thursday.

After the news conference, LG executives took photos with the glasses-free 3-D mobile DTV device in hand.

The mobile DTV set, Ahn said, was an example of the glasses-free 3-D technology LG has developed, adding that the company plans to release a glasses-free 3-D TV for the home in the future.

Ahn and other LG officials declined to say when the glasses-free sets -- portable or for the home -- would make it to store shelves.

LG is the second consumer electronics company to unveil a mobile DTV set that receives channels using a digital TV standard overseen by the Open Mobile Video Coalition. RCA announced a line of its own mobile DTV sets at a CES event Tuesday.

The glasses-free move from LG comes after Nintendo announced its glasses-free 3-D handheld video game system, the 3DS, which it promises to show off at CES on Thursday.


LG seems to be taking a few notes from the video game company. During the same news conference, LG showed off its Magic Motion Remote for its SmartTV internet-connected software that uses motion controls that are very similar to Nintendo’s Wii controllers.

LG also said that this year it would ship a line of 3-D TVs that will use passive 3-D glasses technology often found in movie theatres.

Passive 3-D glasses don’t require batteries like the current offerings of home 3-D TV glasses and don’t use an active-shutter system to generate 3-D images a consumer can see. The passive 3-D TV glasses, which LG is calling Cinema 3D, will be cheaper than current offerings and LG will pack four pairs of the new glasses with the Cinema 3D sets.

Many TV makers are expected to introduce their own versions of passive 3-D TVs and glasses in an effort to make 3-D more afforable for consumers and spark sales. Last year, 3-D TVs didn’t sell nearly as well as manufacturers had hoped and passive 3-D TV is seen as a second chance to sell 3-D in the home.

Tim Alessi, LG’s director of new product development, said the new glasses would be lighter and more comfortable than the current glasses and they would be affordable enough that a consumer could buy enough pairs for the entire family and friends.

‘We’re meeting consumer need by eliminating some of the pain points’ for 3-D, Alessi said. ‘It will be just like going to the movies.’


LG didn’t show its glasses-free 3-D screen for mobile devices Wednesday, but said it would be unveiled Thursday.

The company said it would feature a touch screen with a 480x800 pixel resolution.

‘LG sees tremendous growth potential in the 3-D mobile display market,’ Jong-seok Park, LG’s president and chief executive of mobile communications, said in a statement. ‘With our key understanding of displays, entertainment and mobile technology, LG is looking forward to debuting this exciting new way to watch 3-D movies or play games on your mobile phone.’


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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles