A Tablet for 3-D Spectacles, Minus the Spectacles

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The Neo3do tablet is designed for people who like 3-D but hate the glasses. It plays 3-D video and converts standard video into 3-D that you can see without the goofy spectacles.

The 3-D effect is sometimes excellent; other times, far less so.

The most impressive demonstration I saw used a clip from the 3-D Blu-ray version of the movie "Predator." It also worked very well with games like Angry Birds Rio and Fruit Ninja.

Using Google Earth, you can also zoom into a city and then move the image with your finger, making it look as if you're flying a helicopter over a downtown.

Streaming videos from the Web were less predictable. While some videos looked quite good, others (even some produced for 3-D) had little depth and a ghostly edge floating around some images. You also have to be holding the tablet in just the right place to get the most out of the effect.

Using the 3-D features takes a couple of steps, because you have to go through some intermediary software. For games, you have to start a 3-D games app first. To watch streaming videos you have to first start with the included jetVD app, then choose the video quality, then choose the 3-D player. When the video is running, you choose 3-D, then pick the correct format of the 3-D -- side-by-side or over-and-under. It's not as bad as it may sound, but it certainly makes the effect seem less magical.

But there were problems. The processing required to make 2-D video into 3-D is very demanding, and I experienced repeated freezes and errors that required me to restart the tablet.

Besides the 3-D effects, with this device you have a competent little tablet with an 8-inch screen and Android operating system 4.0.4 (better known as Ice Cream Sandwich). It has all of the familiar Google services, like Gmail, Maps, Messenger and YouTube.

It has adequate cameras in front and back -- although no 3-D camera, which would seem a natural. The tablet comes with 1 gigabyte of RAM and 8 gigabytes of storage, which can be expanded with a MicroSD card of up to 32 gigabytes.

The $350 tablet is available only online, through neo3do.com and Amazon.com. ROY FURCHGOTT

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This article originally appeared in The New York Times.


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