While the general public hasn’t fully adopted augmented reality (AR) glasses, it hasn’t stopped tech companies from dreaming up new ways for them to work. Now, Microsoft has thrown its hat into the ring with some AR glasses that can “see” objects through fog and dust.
How Microsoft’s AR Glasses Could Work
The patent was first found by Autoevolution. You can read it for yourself on the United States Patent and Trademark Office, as it goes into a lot of detail as to how these glasses will work. They’ll sport handy features such as added information over famous monuments and real-time image correction.
However, one particular figure stands out. Figure 12 shows how the glasses can see through dust, fog, and smoke by sensing what’s ahead of them. The patent describes the technology as a “black silicon image sensor” which is also used for night-vision technology.
The black silicon would, in theory, check what’s outside the viewer’s eyesight range and pick out any obstacles that are in the way. The AR glasses would then fill in the blanks so that the viewer knows what’s ahead of them.
While this patent is for AR glasses, there’s nothing to stop this technology from migrating to other environments. For instance, a car could use it in a heads-up display to warn a driver of any incoming obstructions.
The Implications of Microsoft AR for Its Other Products
This may seem like a one-shot product that will butt heads with rivals like Google Glass. However, a recent development from Microsoft may tip us off as to what the company really wants to use this technology for.
Remember how we said that this technology is perfect for cars? Things get more interesting when you learn that Microsoft invested $ 2 billion in smart cars and deployed its Azure service to power self-driving automobiles.
As a result, this may be a part of Microsoft’s push into the automotive industry. If it’s not used in a self-driving car to help it see in dangerous conditions, it could be given to drivers or implemented on the heads-up display to aid a manual driver instead.
As such, we may not just see this fascinating technology in a pair of glasses. We’ll have to wait and see if the cars of the future will use this tech to cut through the fog and show you what’s on the horizon.
Microsoft AR: More Than Just a Novelty?
While glasses that can “see” through smoke may seem like a novel idea, this technology can be implemented in potentially life-saving situations. As this is just a patent, however, we’ll have to wait to see if the software giant plans to move forward with its black silicon image sensor tech.
Did you know that you can pick up night-vision technology for driving right now? We recently did a breakdown of the Lanmodo Vast NVS which claims to be an affordable way to stay safe while you’re on the roads at night.
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