Google X is working on a modular large-format display

Google’s experimental advanced-projects Google X labs is reportedly working on a modular display concept. If it comes to fruition we will see Lego-like screens connect to form a larger seamless image, reports the WSJ.

Google Logo

Google Logo

The concept may potentially bring the possibility to have a cheaper, larger display by connecting smaller screens together, an idea not too dissimilar to its Project Ara modular phones. Based on information from three anonymous sources familiar with the plans, the WSJ report states that the undisclosed project is led by Mary Lou Jesen, head of the display division of Google X and a former MIT professor and co-founder of One Laptop Per Child.

With the modular display technology, the screen could also be made into different shapes as well as sizes. However, the project is still at an early stage, and the problem the team is trying to solve is a way to combine the screens where no visible seams and boarders between modules can be detected by those looking at the screen.

“The big challenge is to electronically, and through software, do the stitching between the seams,” one of the sources said. Due to the moonshot nature of the project and the large technical challenges ahead, the project has been kept secret, even within Google. The company has declined to comment on the leaked information, thus much about the current project, including the size of the modules, the potential size of the giant display, or why the company is interested in working on the project is undisclosed at this point.

Tokyo Digital Billboards

Tokyo Digital Billboards

Even though most large-format screens are typically used typically used for stadium jumbotrons, digital billboards, and video walls, the trend is also making its way  to households. Current household large screens, Samsung’s 105-inch HDTV for example, are priced at around $120,000. If the project ever makes it out of Google X labs, it could provide a low-cost alternative to owning a large screen, and even allow consumers to create customised shapes if commercialised.

Kai-Li Yang

Kai-Li is a tech enthusiast with an in-depth knowledge of mobile technology, music technology and the entertainment industry. She hails from Taiwan and helps Tech Assimilate to erm... assimilate, all the latest tech news and trends from East Asia. Kai-Li Yang on Google+

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