Thursday, May 30, 2024

Samsung VR gear patent application hints at fitness and gaming

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Samsung could be readying a VR (Virtual Reality) headset aimed at fitness and gaming. The South Korean tech giant could be going up against the Apple Vision Pro. Interestingly, the patent application suggests much more than a VR headset.

Samsung VR headset to work with other wearables

Apple prefers to call its Vision Pro a “Spatial Computer”. The VR headset does have a complete computing unit. It works without being tethered to any Mac or PC. The VR headset doesn’t even need controllers as it relies on hand movements that are tracked by onboard cameras.

Samsung recently filed a patent with the Korean Intellectual Property Office. The patent is meant for, “Communication methods and apparatus utilizing avatars in virtual space.” It seems Samsung has taken an interesting approach to Virtual Reality.

The headset can reportedly display virtual avatars to the user, by using multiple sensors to collect information from surroundings. The patent application indicates Samsung’s VR gear will work with other wearable products such as Samsung Galaxy Watch, headphones, and more.

The VR headset would rely on the sensors inside the wearables to gather data. Some examples mentioned include heart rate and calories burned.

The VR headset could pack sensors such as accelerometer, gyroscope, camera module, infrared sensor, etc. These sensors help track user movements and positions in real-time.

The patent mentions the collected and processed data would be displayed on an interactive Graphic User Interface (GUI).

Samsung has categorically noted that its VR system would allow users to view a digital avatar and interact with their surroundings. Users could also share their workouts and exercise details with other people in real-time.

Is Samsung readying an entire VR Gear ecosystem?

The patent is quite broad in its description and possible applications. Interestingly, the patent does not mention the word headset. The document refers to wearable gadgets.

Although Samsung could be developing a VR headset, the recently filed patent seems to suggest the company is going for an entire ecosystem. The Samsung VR gear could include a VR headset that has multiple cameras and sensors for tracking head and hand movements.

The patent does indicate Samsung could embed a navigation system, and include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth support.

With such hardware, it is possible that Samsung would offer a head-mountable wearable computer with a dedicated CPU, GPU, and RAM. The Samsung VR headset would have a rechargeable battery, but the patent doesn’t indicate its location, size, or capacity.

Samsung hasn’t offered any indication about an upcoming VR headset or an integrated VR ecosystem. Moreover, companies regularly file patents, some of which seem quite outlandish.

Regardless, Samsung seems to be exploring a relatively new and perhaps uncharted territory. Samsung may position its upcoming VR gear as a health and fitness gadget. As the company already makes smartwatches and other premium wearables, its mystery VR headset would have a ready ecosystem if or when it launches.

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