Sony’s New “Privacy Screen” Can Tell When Someone’s Watching Your Phone From Behind

Sony Interactive Entertainment has come up with a potential solution to keep device screens safe from the eyes of others in public spaces.

According to a new patent published earlier today, Sony understands the growing need for privacy and how it has become troublesome to use mobile devices in public spaces without catching nearby people taking glances.

Sony has hence come up with a “privacy screen” which can be used for not only mobile devices but also traditional, larger displays. The said privacy screen will use a light-based screen-tracking technology to automatically adjust to its owner. When the owner moves their head in relation to the screen, the privacy screen will match the new angle of its owner.

Since the screen will always be in line with the owner, images on the screen will never feel like they are fading which is normal when looking at mobile devices from the corner. The images will instead be sharp, but the way the privacy screen allows light to pass in relation to its owner will make it difficult for another person to view the same image on the same screen.

In an example shared in the patent, Sony points out that a businessman working on a laptop or a mobile device on a train might not be comfortable with nearby sitting passengers. The privacy-screen technology though will ensure that no one else other than the businessman can read messages displayed on the screen.

An assembly juxtaposed with a computer display has rows and columns of movable louvers that move as the user’s head moves to permit light from the display to reach the user’s eyes but to screen light from the display in other directions, to reduce the risk of eavesdropping.

Interestingly, the patent suggests that users will have the option to turn privacy screen-tracking on or off. That and the system will be able to identify an authorized user as well as an unauthorized user viewing its screen. The latter leading to an alarm of sorts to convey to the user that someone behind them, for example, is trying to read their messages.

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