We are reader supported. External links may earn us a commission.

iOS

Apple reportedly buys eye tracking-specialized company to help with AR development

By Adrian Diaconescu June 28, 2017, 9:30 am

Whether it’s coming in September or later, limited or “regular” numbers at launch, with or without Touch ID fingerprint recognition and priced at around $1,000 or slightly less, the majorly redesigned iPhone 8 is pretty much guaranteed to include some sort of augmented reality technology.

Further down the line, Apple should also try its hand at something Google couldn’t get off the ground in the past. Perhaps inspired by the unexpected Snapchat Spectacles hit, the Carl Zeiss-co-developed Cupertino smart glasses are likely to take AR to the next level, with the suspected help of a little company called SensoMotoric Instruments.

POCKETNOW VIDEO OF THE DAY

SMI is a German provider of dedicated computer vision applications founded in 1991, and largely focused of late on playing a “pioneering role in the development of eye tracking.” Strong evidence points to the OEM and eye tracking solutions supplier for “researchers and professionals” having been recently acquired by Apple to contribute to top secret internal projects.

For its part, the world’s most profitable smartphone vendor refused to publicly discuss its “purpose or plans”, admitting however that “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time” with minimal fanfare.

Sounds like confirmation to us, and now we’re curious exactly how SMI’s very exciting products will play into Apple’s long-term AR-revolutionizing ambitions.

Existing SMI eye tracking glasses claim to be able to “record a person’s natural gaze behavior in real-time and in real world situations with a sampling rate up to 120 Hz”, while an ETG Virtual Reality Package integrates “gaze vectors in VR cave environments using 3D shutter lenses and the optical head tracking module for SMI Eye Tracking Glasses.”

No, we don’t fully understand all that either, but it sounds big, important and brimming with potential for improving immersion and reducing motion sickness in future VR and AR headsets.

Search

Latest Articles

iOS

Here's how the Apple iPod changed the world in 21 years

iPod was an industry-changing device at its time, and it had a massive impact on modern smartphones, and the way we listen to music. We take a last look at the now-discontinued Apple iPod and the history it leaves behind.

By Roland Udvarlaki May 11, 2022, 10:00 am
iOS

How to use Mic Modes in VOIP and FaceTime Calls

This guide will go over the steps you need to follow to activate one of the available Mic Mode settings on Apple Devices to begin using the feature and improve your calling experience.

By Aryan Suren May 10, 2022, 10:00 am
Phones

This iPhone 14 feature might urge users to upgrade

Until now, it appeared that iPhone 14 would only be a minor upgrade over the iPhone 13 series. However, a new leak suggests that the iPhone 14 will come with one feature that might urge users to upgrade.

By Sanuj Bhatia May 9, 2022, 5:00 am