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Dell debuts 'world's first' electronic privacy filter for laptops

No more plastic tape-on screens

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Dell has introduced what it claims is the world's first fully electronic screen filter - digital version of the clip-on sheets offered by the likes of 3M to shield screens from prying eyes.

Implemented in software and hardware, the electronic filter effectively reduces the viewing angle of the display, ensuring, Dell claimed, that people sitting next to you and glancing across will see nothing but a pattern of black and white bars and Dell logos.

Dell was coy on the details, but the technology requires an extra-light backlight, one of which is white and used to "polarise" the on-screen image and impose the reduced viewing angle.

Yet the user only registers a "minimal" reduction in screen brightness, the PC giant said. Alas, Dell didn't have any E6400s fitted with the new technology at its big launch in Monaco today, so we can't show you it in action.

Dell calls the technology "one-touch privacy" - it's activated through a single key press.

Curiously, it's only available on one machine, the Latitude E6400, as an optional £88/€110 extra, though it can be specified on these laptops bought today.

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