Following yesterday’s report that Korean technology giant Samsung is making its own gaming-focused virtual reality (VR) headset, VRFocus has uncovered a patent from the company for a head-mounted display (HMD) that projects virtual images. The patent was filed back in August 2013. It isn’t clear when the company started work on the rumoured device, though if it hopes to undercut both the Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus headsets then it was likely started some time ago. Images from the document can be seen below.
The patent describes an HMD in general as ‘a device that is worn by a user and displays an image in front of the user’s eyes in a virtual reality system or an augmented reality system’. This particular HMD is said to form a virtual image at a ‘predetermined distance’ in front of the user. It seems as if the device has modules for generating images to both the left and right eye. These modules are also set as a ‘predetermined angle’ to direct the user’s vision to a ‘target position’.
In terms of a display the patent makes mention of a frame holder ‘for inserting the image source’, specifically mentioning LCD and OLED panels. This sounds like an approach similar to the Altergaze VR headset in which users slot a phone in front of a pair of lenses. It also somewhat conflicts with yesterday’s report in which it was suggested that Samsung’s headset was a peripheral with an OLED display that could be used with one of the company’s smartphones or tablets. That said, the device still has to connect with the HMD in some way, perhaps this frame holder could still house the device. It also keeps in line with the report’s claim that the device would be Android-based, given that Samsung phones run on the operating system.
The images included in the listing, as seen below, show a rough outline of the headset, referring to the position of the user’s eyes at the aforementioned predetermined angle.
It certainly seems as if Samsung has at least something in the works for VR technology, then. Just what form it takes isn’t clear. Will the device have its own screen or use its own brand of phones for the image? VRFocus will continue to follow the project closely and bring you all the latest updates.