Does Apple also make augmented reality glasses? Well, the phone cum laptop giant is surely interested in entering the Augmented Reality market. Apple no longer hides its interest in augmented reality. At its last developer conference, the tech firm launched a new tool called AR Kit that allows them to create apps and video games in augmented reality (to the Pokémon Go) for the iPhone and iPad.
Today, we learn from the MacRumours site that Apple would have bought the company SensoMotoric Instruments, a specialist in eye-surgery and tracking. This is a company that is revered as a pioneer in the field of vision technology, producing some of the world’s best eye-tracking and eye-oriented sensory technology equipment for different purposes.
SensoMotoric Instruments consist of devices that track the user’s eyes and performs many other eye-related functions. It has also proven very useful for being among the best virtual reality helmets or augmented reality glasses.
These are devices that, through eye tracking, make the user’s eye look like a pointer. Or, because the device knows where the user’s gaze is oriented, it can display this part in maximum resolution, while the parts that it does not look can be displayed with lower resolutions. With such a technique, it is possible to reduce the use of the resources of the apparatus by an application in VR or augmented reality.
Though the company’s line of products has initially been centered on the health sector, SMI technologies can be used on both virtual reality helmets and augmented reality glasses. And that is exactly the reason why Apple seems to be very much interested in the entire company. But where will it go with the purchase: Virtual Reality or Augmented Reality? It clearly looks like Apple is more interested in augmented reality than in virtual reality (although it has already laid the foundation for HTC Vive headset support on Mac).
The tech giant is not, however, limited as to what it can use SensoMotoric for. After all, if you purchase a company, you are entitled to use it to meet your needs, if they are legal. There are a lot of options on the table. Apple could use SMI eye tracking on augmented reality glasses (like the Microsoft Hololens), but it could also use this technology on the iPhone, in order to muscle applications and games that will use the AR Kit.