Since the release of Apple’s new ARKit platform, all that was missing was a controller-free interaction system. It now seems, with the uncovering of a new patent, that this may be on the way.
Patently Apple has revealed a new filing for a new 3D camera system with depth sensing capabilities used for gesture recognition. The system takes data from the reflected points of a light beam to “compute a depth map” of the area around it. Interestingly enough, the patent points to this specific type of depth mapping as a possible type of control for gaming.
“Such depth mapping may be applied to interactive video games,” the patent states. “For example, a subject may interact with a game by making various gestures with his hand, and depth mapping may be used to identify the gestures.”
It sounds like interacting with the light beam and the reflections will give the camera positional data on your hands, then. The patent doesn’t make any mention of AR but this certainly seems like a good fit for the tech. On HoloLens, you interact with virtual software by holding your hand out and making a pinching motion. This type of controller-free system allows for easy navigation of menus, even if it isn’t the most versatile tool when it comes to controlling games and other content.
Currently, the company doesn’t have an official AR headset to pair it with, but such a device has been rumored for a long time now. Perhaps this system could one day help us stroke our new AR dogs?