Augmented reality (AR) has come on in leaps and bounds since the initial launch of the Google Glass. Since then, the technology had advanced, and seen a huge uptake by enterprise and industry, as well as use in entertainment. Leap Motion are aiming to push that technology even further by producing its own AR headset, codenamed Project North Star.
According to the company blog and a post on Twitter, Leap Motion have been hard at work developing and refining a new type of AR headset system, which integrates the company’s hand and finger tracking along with the latest AR technology.
Working with computer models, Leap Motion created an initial design which was built around a 5.5-inch smartphone display, using the largest reflector area possible. Then, using a 3D printer, a prototype rig was created that allowed the team to experiment with various angles and positions so the best effect could be achieved.
The initial prototype seemed very bulky and unwieldy, but is said to have provided and unprecedented field-of-view, which each eye seeing digital content approximately 105° high by 75° wide, with 1440×2560 resolution per eye.
Experimenting with this allowed the company to find a compromise between the quality of the display and the comfort of the headset, achieving a prototype model with a field-of-view of 95° x 70° with a 20 degree vertical (downwards) tilt and a 65% stereo overlap.
Further development on the system is planned, as Leap Motion wish to integrate such features as eye-tracking, head-mounted light sensors, directional speakers, controllable screen transparency and actuators to dynamically move the displays.