Apple Patents Oculus Rift-Style Headset

If you’re a hardcore gamer, you’ll already know that the real next-gen gaming revolution is virtual reality, spearheaded by the Oculus Rift. It seems that Apple has been taking notes, with a freshly uncovered patent revealing sketches of a potential Apple-branded head-mounted display.

A 3D glasses system resembling “ski or motorcycle goggles”, the 14,000-word patent focuses more on media viewing than gaming or Google Glass-like AR features (though it does leave room for both), offering a personal screen mounted in a frame with a display for each eye creating the 3D visual effect.

Where the patent gets more exciting however is in its description of a feature that could improve the viewing experience for those with eyesight problems. Rather than having to squeeze a pair of prescription glasses under the goggles, Apple describes a conceptual data processing technique that could adjust the image sent to each individual lens to compensate for those with eyesight problems — an-as-yet unaddressed shortcoming with other dual-display 3D glasses systems.

As ever, a patent is no indication that a company has any concrete plans to put a product together. But it does show that Apple recognises that head-mounted displays are an area of interest for tech-savvy consumers, and potentially one to watch. With the company in recent times accused of resting on established glories, more adventurous concepts like this one could be needed, should the iPhone bubble ever burst. At least it’s a change from iWatch and iTV rumours, right? [Patently Apple via TechRadar]

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