‘Invisible’ phone debuted by company, and it’s more plausible than you think

The Right Click

It seems like a modern day version of ‘The Emperor Has No Clothes’: Taiwanese mobile company Polytron has unveiled its prototype for a new phone, but instead of the usual claims of a sleek look and carefully chosen colours, this phone is almost completely see-through.

Mobile Geeks reports the company is showing an early version of its transparent phone hardware, currently running without an operating system, mostly to promote awareness about the kind of technology that they’re capable of making.

Does anyone else feel like this is a joke? Am I the only one who thinks the practicality of a transparent phone is very limited? While it does look cool, years of watching sci-fi shows has taught a valuable lesson about the future: trying to read text on a transparent surface is a pain. Most of the time, you’d have to hold the device up to the light in order to read anything on it, and that brings with it a whole host of potential problems.

But Polytron’s hardware is still in the early stages, and chances are good they’ll be addressing many issues like this going forward. For example the battery and microSD cards, which are currently very visible on the clear phone, will be covered up with an opaque panel.

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The phone operates using Polytron’s Polyvision Smart Glass technology, which starts off in a cloudy white state and becomes transparent once it’s been turned on (which I guess solves the problem of always losing it in my purse). Liquid crystal molecules are scattered in the material when it is powered off, but when electricity is sent through the device, those molecules line up allowing for light to be able to pass through the device, making it look clear.

Personally, I’m still not sold, but perhaps I’ll be proven wrong in the coming months: Polytron aims to have a working prototype by the end of the year.

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