The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has just awarded Apple a patent for 3D user interface session control, a software UI that would come in use with PrimeSense’s motion-sensing hardware (via Apple Insider).
The newly granted patent outlines the design of a user interface that would later come in use with PrimeSense’s motion-sensing hardware, the Israeli firm it acquired last year. This move is a part of Apple’s initiative to transfer the intellectual property over PrimeSense and bring in body gesture controls to its devices.
PrimeSense is a semiconductor company that provides products in the area of sensory inputs for consumer and commercial markets. It is best known for licensing the hardware design and chip used in Microsoft’s Kinetic motion-sensing system for the Xbox 360.
Gesture recognition system includes using a camera to track a user’s movements in three dimensions, then using that movement to control the on-screen user interface. The images in the new patent depicts a desktop user making use of simple gestures such as push and wave to control basic functions. Push, for example, can be used to enable the user interface or minimize a window.
The patent also describes the user interface in different modes and would accordingly direct the devices, as to whether they have to accept the gestures or not. It would allow you to turn off the gesture system in order to save battery or avoid accidental commands.
The patent further suggests an onboard light array be configured to illuminate when a user is positioned within its field of view, giving a visual cue that the system is ready for input.
Microsoft already uses gesture controls in its Xbox Kinect hardware, and Samsung smart TVs also incorporate them. However, they failed to make the splash that they were supposed to.
Since, Apple has a better history of luring non-Apple users into its fanatics as well as its die-hard Apple devotees, the technology might gain a better attention under the reign of the Cupertino giant. In fact, Apple has a history of introducing their own spin on existing products to great success.
Last month, Apple was assigned patent rights for a ‘Lens array projector’, that revolved around the physics of light projections and optical components of a 3D mapping sensor system, the key system for tracking body gestures.
If Apple succeeds to design a system that would integrate gesture controls to itself, the delectation of using the devices will hike enormously. Apple’s new technology can be integrated to Apple TV, Mac which will surely bring in a whole new experience. You can hop from one video to another by simply waving your hand and much more. That’s right, your hand will hold the power of a remote control.
Adding this to the Apple TV, which has been long forgotten by apple and lacks new upgrades, will fire up the sales of its next iteration when launched. Though, iPhone enjoys all the up to date technology integrated to it, Apple can possibly add this system to its upcoming line of iPhones as well.