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Researchers have created holograms that you can touch and feel

Companies are only just now experimenting with the idea of bringing holograms to consumer electronics, but a group of researchers from the University of Tokyo is already bringing the technology to the next level. It’s one thing to be able to interact with holograms, or even manipulate them through augmented reality, but it’s another thing entirely to be able to actually touch holograms. That’s exactly what the researchers have enabled with the Haptoclone, which uses ultrasonic radiation pressure to simulate the sensation that you’re touching a physical object when interacting with a hologram.

Virtual reality, augmented reality and holograms might not mean anything to you right now, but these new technologies will likely play a major role in future generations of smart devices, including mobile computers such as phones and tablets. Many companies, including top tech players, are currently developing their own VR and AR projects, though independent researchers are also working on such innovations. For example, Japanese engineers have figured out how to create holograms that you can actually touch. Haptics researchers from the University of Tokyo’s Department of Complexity Science and Engineering (DCSE) are working on the project, according to Motherboard. Their product is called Haptoclone and it offers users an interactive system that supports “telehaptics.” That means you’d be able to send a holographic image of your hand or face to a contact who uses the same kind of device, and experience the illusion of actually touching the other person.

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