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RED is making a $1,200 smartphone with a ‘holographic display’

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High-end cameramaker RED has just announced a premium smartphone called Hydrogen One, and the headlining feature is something the company is referring to as a “holographic display.” A buzzword-filled press release for Hydrogen One says that the 5.7-inch display somehow uses nanotechnology to “seamlessly [switch] between traditional 2D content, holographic multi-view content, 3D content, and interactive games.”

It all sounds like some sort of mix between the gimmicky visual trickery Amazon offered with the Fire Phone and the glasses-less 3D displays like the ones found on the Nintendo 3DS. RED says that it will also use an algorithm to convert stereo sound into “multi-dimensional audio” to add to the immersive experience — or, as RED puts it, to “ASSAULT YOUR SENSES.”

The phone will allow for modular attachments, similar to those found on the Moto Z line or the Essential Phone, but with a special focus on image capture. And the phone will work (somehow) with RED’s extensive lineup of digital cinema cameras.

The company says the phone will ship in early 2018, and it’s currently available for preorder on RED’s website. It starts at $1,195 for the aluminum version, and there’s also a $1,595 variant made out of titanium.

All of this is subject to change, though. The company writes that the design of the phone may change, but more importantly, “after this initial release we will NOT be able to fill all orders on time due to display production limitations. We will NOT guarantee these prices at the time of release.” The modular attachments won’t be available at launch, either.

Otherwise, Hydrogen One sounds like any other relatively beefed up Android phone, though we don’t know exact specs. If you tweak the brightness of the photo, you can see a very grippy design, and a relatively small camera bump. It will use USB Type-C, it has a micro SD slot for expandable storage, and yes — it has a headphone jack.

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