Google tried to conquer the wearable world by placing a heads-up display close to your eye, but Lenovo thinks it has a better idea: a wrists-up display. Yes, instead of strapping a Borg-like instrument to your head, Lenovo thinks you'd prefer holding the side of your watch up to your eye to view content on a secondary display.
What could be more discreet?
The new technology, dubbed the Virtual Interactive Display (VID), is just a prototype and is part of Lenovo's Android Wear-based Magic View smartwatch concept design. The VID sits below the watch face, where the strap would normally begin. The display wouldn't be readable from a distance and could allow you to view private information in public spaces without intrusion from others.
To see anything on the VID, you have to hold the display right up to your eye, and then you'll see a full-size image. Android Central got a look at the VID during Lenovo's TechWorld event in Beijing on Thursday and said the picture was quite clear; however, moving your arm too much would cause blurring.
Lenovo had a few concept apps running on the watch including a video player, and a panorama images app that used the watch's sensors to move around the landscape.
Overall, it's an interesting problem to try and solve. Since a smartwatch sits on your wrist the display is more public than a smartphone in your pocket--providing the opportunity for others to see personal information. A secondary display probably isn't the right answer, but it's an interesting engineering feat nonetheless.
The impact on you at home: This is just a concept for now, and Lenovo has no plans to roll it out as a finished product. Magic View is currently a little on the bulky side--Android Central says it's about the size of the LG Watch Urbane LTE with a Moto 360-style face. Before it could roll out, the watch would have to slim down a bit, and battery life would have to be pretty solid. Plus we'd all have to get over the idea of everyone walking around looking like they're incredibly near-sighted.
This story, "Lenovo's wacky Magic View smartwatch reveals a secret display when held to your face" was originally published by Greenbot.