Tired of Zoom calls? Company offers at-home hologram machines
Looking for a new way to communicate during the pandemic? A Los Angeles company has created phone booth-sized machines to beam live holograms into your living room.
The device made by PORTL Inc lets users talk in real time with a life-sized hologram of another person.
The machines also can be equipped with technology to enable interaction with recorded holograms of historical figures or relatives who have passed away.
Each PORTL device is seven feet (2.1m) tall, five feet (1.5m) wide and two feet (0.6m) deep, and can be plugged into a standard wall outlet. Anyone with a camera and a white background can send a hologram to the machine in what Chief Executive David Nussbaum calls "holoportation."
"We say if you can't be there, you can beam there," said Nussbaum, who previously worked at a company that developed a hologram of Ronald Reagan for the former president's library and digitally resurrected rapper Tupac Shakur.
"We are able to connect military families that haven't seen each other in months, people from opposite coasts," or anyone who is social distancing to fight the coronavirus, Nussbaum added.
or years, hardware engineers at American consumer electronics firms have hopped on a flight to China to iron out manufacturing kinks on assembly lines, but the COVID-19 pandemic and Sino-U.S. tensions have made travel between the countries difficult.
A court has ruled that a unit of Japan's Sony Corp broke the consumer law by denying customers refunds for faulty PlayStation games and ordered the company to pay a A$3.5 million ($2.4 million) fine, Australia's consumer watchdog said.