Apple wins a Patent for their Digital Crown Input and Sensor System being applied to a future Mixed Reality Headset and Smartglasses

Apple has Won Two all-new HMD related patents covering Head Securement & Display Adjustment Systems

1 cover Apple patent report Head Securement System + Display system

 

Today the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office officially granted Apple two new HMD related patents that were never made public before. The first granted patent covers a ‘Head Securement’ system to maximize user comfort when using an HMD for extended periods of time. Apple’s second HMD related granted patent relates to display adjustment for head-mountable devices.

 

Head Securement for HMD

 

Apple’s first granted patent covers Head-mountable devices, such as head-mountable displays, headsets, visors, smartglasses, head-up display, etc., can perform a range of functions that are managed by the components (e.g., sensors, circuitry, and other hardware) included with the wearable device.

 

A head-mountable device can be secured to a head of a user while being worn and used by the user. It can be desirable to maximize the fit and comfort on the user, so that usage of the head-mountable device for extended durations is not difficult for the user.

 

Some head-mountable devices are designed to secure to the head of the user by wrapping tightly around the back of the user's head, for example, with a band. This arrangement often focuses forces on the front and rear of the user's head. This can be uncomfortable for the user and restrict the movement of the user's face, for example when making natural facial expressions.

 

Certain functions of the head-mountable device can be performed when the head-mountable device is secured in certain configurations. For example, a head-mountable device can provide sensing capabilities that are optimally performed when facial features of the user or permitted to move freely, for example when the user expresses emotions. When the head-mountable device is secured to the head in a manner that does not restrict the movement of certain facial features, then the user can comfortably wear the head-mountable device and simultaneously make natural facial expressions. Additionally, sensors of the head-mountable device can effectively detect and respond to such facial features as one of its regular operations.

 

It can be desirable to evenly distribute forces across a wide area of the user's head. For example, systems of the present disclosure can provide a head-mountable device that distributes securement forces to sides of the user's head. A head-mountable device can include a head securement element with arms that clamp onto sides of the user's head. Such arms can be pivotably coupled to a frame of the head-mountable device. Where a band is provided, the band can have an adjustable width that tightens onto the sides of the user's head to reduce the load on the front and rear of the user's head. A head-mountable device can also distribute forces (e.g., weight) onto the top of the user's head without restricting facial features of the user (e.g., forehead, eyes, etc.).

 

2 HMD elements  design  apple patent figs 1  5 & 6  Patently Apple report
2 HMD elements  design  apple patent figs 1  5 & 6  Patently Apple report

 

The head-mountable device 10 can include one or more sensors #170 (FIG. 13 above), as described herein. The head-mountable device 10 can include one or more other sensors. Such sensors can be configured to sense substantially any type of characteristic such as, but not limited to, images, pressure, light, touch, force, temperature, position, motion, and so on. For example, the sensor can be a photodetector, a temperature sensor, a light or optical sensor, an atmospheric pressure sensor, a humidity sensor, a magnet, a gyroscope, an accelerometer, a chemical sensor, an ozone sensor, a particulate count sensor, and so on. By further example, the sensor can be a bio-sensor for tracking biometric characteristics, such as health and activity metrics. Other user sensors can perform facial feature detection, facial movement detection, facial recognition, eye tracking, user mood detection, user emotion detection, voice detection, etc. Sensors can include a camera which can capture image-based content of the outside world.

 

For more details, review Apple's granted patent 11,402,644.

 

Display Adjustment for HMD

 

Apple’s second HMD related granted patent relates to display adjustment for head-mountable devices.

 

Apple’s granted patent covers systems for a head-mountable device with an optical module that provides a display element that is moveable based on pressure and/or temperature changes within an enclosed chamber.

 

The control mechanisms can directly and/or indirectly alter one or more of the temperature, pressures, and/or volume of the enclosed chamber. As the conditions within the chamber are altered, an extendable member can expand and/or retract to move the display element towards and/or away from a user's eye. The mechanisms for controlling the position of the display element can be actively and/or passively controlled.

 

4 Apple HMD optical system patent figs 1  2 & 5 - Patently Apple granted patent report

 

Apple’s patent FIG. 5 above illustrates a top schematic view of an optical module of the head-mountable device of FIG. 2 taken along line A-A and having an extendable member in a retracted configuration.

 

For more details, review Apple’s granted patent 11,402,640.

 

10.52FX - Granted Patent Bar

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