Apple has been working on a system to capture your fingers in 3D and recognize your gestures in the air, something that could become a feature of Apple’s next virtual reality headset.
The patent published by the United States Patent and Trademark Office details a system capable of generating a complete 3D model of the user’s fingers.
Gesture recognition technology could be used in Apple’s mixed reality and augmented reality glasses, while 3D modeling could be key for mixed reality glasses – a device that may be announced this summer.
As it points Patently Apple, the patent concerns both finger gestures and visual detection of finger touches on real or 3D surfaces.
The diagram on these lines illustrates a possible system configuration to generate a 3D model of the fingertip using a combination of cameras and depth sensors. The caption in the patent refers to algorithms based on contour alignment to allow tracking of the hand in relation to other objects.
As always, the patent does not mean that Apple is going to use it in the final product, but it seems logical that those of Cupertino want to do without external controllers, which are always a barrier in the user experience.
What else do we know about Apple Glass RM and RA
There are no details about Apple’s mixed reality glasses, just a mixture of more or less well-founded guesswork and rumors.
We’ve heard rumors about possible dual displays with 8K resolution, a retinal tracking system, and 3D LiDAR sensors built into the headset.
There are also rumors of additional portable haptic controllers that could serve to supplement the patent-covered 3D modeling software.
There are rumors that the device is priced at $ 3,000, a figure corroborated by sources at Bloomberg. According to these rumors, Apple expects to sell about one unit per store per day.
Bottom line: Apple’s VR goggles are (almost 99.5% sure) on the way, but you may well have to start saving now if you want one.
In June we will know more.