Intel and Nokia team up to research ThreeDee virtual sauna

At state of the art research center in Oulu

INTEL AND NOKIAS joint product development has now spun off a join laboratory that will be researching the world of “3-D” [sic] for mobile devices. The research will take place at Oulun yliopisto or University of Oulu, if you prefer, and it’s meant to lead to “new user interfaces and experiences”. We can’t guarantee the virtual sauna, but considering the Finnish people’s obsession with saunas, well, who knows what will transpire…

On a more serious note, the two companies are looking at developing bits and pieces related to 3D in a non-traditional way for its MeeGo platform. The Intel and Nokia Joint Innovation Center as the research facility is called was officially opened today and will employ “two dozen R&D professionals”. The new facility will be located in the Center for Internet Excellence (which we’re not exactly sure what it is) at the University of Oulu and it will be working closely with the Oulu Urban Living Labs.

The press release mentions research that will look at adding features such as a 3D hologram of the person you’re talking to on the phone as a way to make consumers feel more engaged and involved in their mobile experience than currently possible. Nokia’s Senior VP and CTO Rich Green has been quoted saying “3-D technology could change the way we use our mobile devices and make our experiences with them much more immersive” and he continues “Our new joint laboratory with Intel draws on the Oulu research community’s 3-D interface expertise, and over time will lay down some important foundations for future mobile experiences.”

The University of Oulu also researches photonics and “future telecommunications solutions” something both companies are interested in, so it’s very likely that some of the research will be spent looking at new possibilities within those fields as well. Considering it’s a fairly small team that will be located at Oulu, split between the two companies it will be interesting to see what the research will yield over time.

If nothing else, this piece of news does at least suggest that the co-operation between the two companies is progressing in a positive manner. It will be interesting to how MeeGo turns out once it finally lunches on devices powered both by Intel hardware and on Nokia’s in-house devices which are likely to be ARM powered, at least for the time being.S|A

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