LCoS technology initially has been developed to enable large-screen, high-definition, rear-projection televisions with very high picture quality at relatively low cost. This market today has been taken over by the modern large-screen LCD and plasma flat panel displays. Thus, LCoS microdisplays today are mainly used for near-to-the-eye applications, like electronic viewfinders in digital still and video cameras as well as in head mounted displays (HMDs) for Virtual and Augmented Reality applications and for projection e.g. in pico projectors.
There are two approaches to generate a full color display with LCoS technology: In the first approach three LCoS panel are used - one display chip per color - and are combined optically into the final image. In the second approach a single LCoS panel is combined with a color wheel (or an RGB LED array) illuminating the display with only red, green or blue light sequentially. The final picture then is combined by the observer's eyes, which due to its laggardness with respect to the fast changing color images can not differentiate anymore between the tree colored images.