Technology giant Apple is one of the biggest names in the business world, with an impressive quarterly revenue of $58.3 million posted for the second quarter of 2020 according to the Apple.com site.
Online rumors now suggest that the Cupertino-based company could be set to use vision correction technology to dominate the VR headset market. What does this mean for the future of these devices and for businesses that are related to them?
What Sparked the Rumors?
This issue first came to light with reports in early 2020 that Apple had made patent applications relating to the eyewear industry. According to the PatentlyApple.com website, the first patent is for a prescription lens system that would be used on a head-mounted display device.
The idea appears to be that users who have prescription glasses would be able to use a unique lens in a mixed reality headset. This would allow them to use the headset without the need for wearing traditional eyeglasses, making it less awkward.
This was followed up by a couple of additional patent applications that mention further details. They call it a “powerful new vision correction optical system” to allow a user to incorporate their optical prescription for the likes of astigmatism, farsightedness, and nearsightedness.
What This Could Mean for Eyeglasses Wearers?
One possible outcome of this research is that Apple could produce a machine that automatically detects any eye conditions. This would mean that it is no longer necessary to get an eye test carried out in an optical services center, as this device would be capable of working out exactly what you need to see perfectly.
There is no guarantee that anything will ever come of this. Many patent applications never go any further, and Apple is well-known for registering a huge number of patents each year.
However, it is worth noting that other companies are working on something similar. One of the possible rivals to any future Apple product can be seen at Visibly.com. This company offers “anywhere, anytime virtual vision test technology”.
This ties in with the virtual mirror technology that we can see from the GlassesUSA.com service. On their site, people can view themselves online with any pair of glasses on. Allied to virtual testing, it would mean that we could test our eyes and buy the right eyeglasses without leaving home.
What Can We Expect from an Apple Headset in the Future?
The Apple focus is likely to be on producing a headset that people with existing eyeglass prescriptions can use without any hassle. While reviews suggest that many existing VR headsets can be used with eyeglasses, there is no doubt that being able to use one without glasses would be easier.
Therefore, this could give them a big edge in the headset market, which has been predicted to grow after a disappointing 2019. The SPGlobal.com site points to a projection of 13 million global sales of VR headsets in 2020.
SMEs involved in the industry may just benefit from any uplift in sales that this new technology may bring. People being able to use headsets more comfortably could lead to a greater demand for games, accessories, and everything else associated with these devices.
It is too early to know for sure what happens next, but anyone who uses prescription eyeglasses or is involved in VR will want to look out for further news from Apple on this project.