Apple won Three more HMD/Smartglasses Patents today covering an Adjustable Optical System, Virtual Controls and more
Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially granted Apple another three HMD/Smartglasses patents covering an Adjustable Optical System, Virtual Controls and more. The main patent in this group relates to a head-mountable device that could include an optical module that provides a display element and/or an optical element that are adjustably mounted.
The display element and/or another optical element can be adjusted by actuation of a mechanism that allows the display element and/or the optical element to move in one or more (e.g., six) degrees of freedom (roll, pitch, and yaw).
The actuation allows for the position of the display element to be adjusted relative to the optical element to correct for any displacements caused during operation of the head-mountable device.
One or more sensors/cameras within the optical module or external to the optical module and/or the head-mountable device can detect the position of the display at an initial state as well as thereafter. The sensors can check for changes in the position of the components to provide a basis for the actuation.
Apple's patent FIG. 1 below represents a general HMD device; FIG. 3 illustrates a sectional view of an optical module of the head-mountable device; FIG. 4 illustrates another sectional view of the optical module of the head-mountable device.
Apple further notes that in patent FIG. 3, an optical module can provide visual output for viewing by a user. While a single optical module (#140) as shown in FIG. 3, it will be understood that separate optical modules can be provided for each of the user's two eyes. Each of the optical modules can be adjusted to align with the corresponding eye of the user.
While the optical element (#162) is shown as a lens in FIG. 3, it will be understood that the optical element can include or be provided with one or more diffusers, filters, polarizers, prisms, beam splitters, diffraction gratings, mirrors, and/or windows.
The housing (#144) and the optical element (#162) can together define an outer periphery of the optical module and sealingly enclose the interior. For example, an interior space of the optical module can be isolated (e.g., hermetically sealed) from an external environment.
Projection-based systems may employ retinal projection technology that projects graphical images onto a person's retina.
Projection systems also may be configured to project virtual objects into the physical environment, for example, as a hologram or on a physical surface.
Apple's patent FIG. 5 below illustrates a sectional view of an optical module of the head-mountable device with an external device for alignment detection.
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Apple's patent FIG. 6 below illustrates a block diagram of a head-mountable device.
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Apple notes that while the Head-mountable device could be a full HMD, eventually the invention could apply to visors, smartglasses, a head-up display and more.
For more details, review Apple's granted patent 11,137,596.
Other HMD Related Granted Patents Issued Today
Other HMD related patents granted to Apple today includes patent 11,137,612 titled "Electronic device with adjustable support structures."
The head-mounted device may have lenses in lens modules. A left positioner may be used to position a left lens module. A right positioner may be used to position a right lens module. The left and right lens modules may have respective left and right lenses and respective left and right portions of a display.
To accommodate users with different face shapes and sizes, the head-mounted device may include adjustable support structures coupled to the housing structure. The adjustable support structures may include a first portion that rests against a user's forehead and second and third portions that rest against the user's cheeks or temples. In some arrangements, the adjustable support structures may be configured to expand and retract to accommodate different face shapes and sizes. The adjustable support structures that expand and retract may include posts with adjustable lengths, telescoping layers of material, inflatable structures, and/or elastomeric materials.
Apple's patent FIG. 10 below is a side view of an illustrative head-mounted device having adjustable support structures such as a movable member that pivots about a pivot point at the center of the movable member; FIG. 11 is a perspective view of an illustrative head-mounted device having adjustable support structures such as telescoping layers that expand and contract.
Lastly, Apple was granted patent number 11,137,967 for "Gaze-based user interactions." Patently Apple covered this in a granted patent report posted last week titled "Apple wins a patent relating to Advanced Controls for their Future MR Headset that includes Eye Gaze, Siri, Touch & more." Today's granted patent covers 20 new patent claims that Apple added to their previously granted patent To review the new patent claims, click here.