Lenovo said it is working on a smartphone supporting Google’s Project Tango effort, which is intended to create a deeper link between smartphones and the real world.

Set for launch in summer 2016, the new smartphone is intended to “turn the screen into a magic window that can overlay digital information and objects onto the real world”, the Chinese company said.

The work also includes chipmaker Qualcomm.

“To break new ground in today’s hypercompetitive smartphone and tablet industries, we must take innovation risks – it’s the only way to truly change the way people use mobile technology,” said Chen Xudong, SVP and president of the mobile business group at Lenovo.

Project Tango is said to be a technology platform which uses advanced computer vision, depth sensing and motion tracking to create on-screen 3D experiences, allowing users to explore physical environments via the device.

Specialised hardware and software combine to enable devices to react to user movement; devices can recognise familiar places such as homes, offices and public spaces; and, unlike GPS, Project Tango motion tracking is designed to work indoors, enabling precise use in areas like shopping malls.

To support the effort, Lenovo is asking developers to create apps, with the ability to win funding and to have apps featured on the unnamed smartphone.