Microsoft Patent Application Hints At Google Glass Rival

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Patent application hints at sports-focused Google Glass rival

Microsoft has put in a patent application that indicates it is planning some high-tech kit to compete with Google Glass augmented reality spectacles.

The patent application covers a computer-implemented method for providing “supplemental information describing at least the objects in the field of view of the user,” according to a document released last week. The actual application (number US20120293548was registered with the US Patent & Trademark Office in May 2011.

Microsoft augmented reality patent picture 1Google Glass rival

The Redmond giant has made some major moves in the hardware space recently, with its Windows 8 Surface tablet, and its Xbox Kinect motion sensor technology gaining plenty of plaudits.

Now it appears to want a piece of the wearable technology market, which could take off next year with the arrival of the Google Glass product (below), which acts as an augmented reality device, displaying data on users’ surroundings.

Google Glass spectacles comprise an Android-powered display, a webcam, a GPS locator and an Internet connection node built into one side of a pair of glasses.

One of the people behind the Microsoft patent application is Kathryn Stone Perez, executive producer of the Xbox Incubation unit which created the Kinect sensor. That could hint at a tie-in with the Kinect technology.

Yet Microsoft, in its patent application, homed in on the use of head-mounted gear for live events, such as a baseball game. In that scenario, the device could tell the user the record of a pitcher or batsman, with their respective averages, or view an instant replay, the patent application suggested.


“The head mounted display is transparent or at least semi-transparent, with the capability to overlay information in a display field,” the application read.

“A head mounted display device will be coupled to a display processor. The display processor may include a network interface, a processor, memory, a camera input, a microphone input, location sensors input, and/or orientation sensors input.

“A supplemental information presentation application may be present within the memory of the display processor. The display processor will be coupled to the head mounted display device through any of the number of various means, as described below.”

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