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Kowon readies anti-glance LCD glasses

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South Korean company Kowon Technology today said it will next week ship pairs of personal TV glasses to local consumers concerned that too many of their fellows are peering over their shoulders at their mobile phone screens.

Kowon's solution to the problem is a head-mounted display that sets a 4.8 x 4.2mm, 320 x 240 LCD panel in front of each eye. The digital display specs, dubbed the MSP-209, weigh 58g and, according to the manufacturer, make the wearer feel like he or she is watching a 32in TV from a distance of two metres.

kowon msp-209 lcd specs

Each pair has its own rechargeable battery that's good for eight hours' viewing, Kowon said.

The company is bringing the glasses to market in response to the boom in demand for TV on mobile phones. South Korea favours the satellite-broadcast Digital Multimedia Broadcasting (DMB) system. There are other forms, too, such as DVB-H, which is derived from standard terrestrial digital broadcasts. But whatever format is used, programmes are still shown on a tiny phone screen. And in crowded places, users are likely to tire of others taking a quick look too.

The set goes on sale in Korea next week for KRW199,000 ($216/£116/€170). Kowon said it is already in talks with suppliers in Europe and other Far Eastern countries with a view to a possible June introduction, depending on just how successful the specs are in Korea.

However, it might be worth waiting. Kowon said it was preparing a version of the glasses with 640 x 480 LCDs. ®

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