New patent hints at hands-free gaming on Apple TV

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Forget joysticks, this could be the future of gaming.
Forget joysticks, this could be the future of gaming.
Photo: Apple/USPTO

There have been plenty of rumors about the refreshed Apple TV set to arrive at WWDC, but two of the biggest concern the fact that it will feature a revolutionary gesture-based user interface and a new focus on gaming.

Possibly tying into that is a newly-published patent from Apple, which describes a pattern projector which would use laser beams to map the 3D space between the device and a user — thereby allowing a person to carry out motions as a way of interacting with specific apps.

And, yes, that includes games.

Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 12.27.09
A wave of the hand could be enough to alert your Apple TV that you want to perform an action.

 

Originally filed by PrimeSense — the Israel-based company behind the 3D motion tracking in the original Xbox Kinect, which Apple acquired in late 2013 — the patent lists its asignee as Apple. It describes a small compact projector and light detection unit which could be built into a phone, computer, or future Apple TV.

As described, it would allow a Kinect-style “gesture-based user interface, in which user movements … control an interactive computer application, such as a game, in place of tactile interface elements such as a mouse, joystick or other accessory.”

Although the images in today’s patent clearly show hand gestures being used for the device, that wouldn’t have to be the case. Apple has long-discussed a “magic wand” remote which would be used to control a number of different Apple TV functions such as zooming, accessing a keyboard, carrying out photo editing, and possibly gaming.

Today’s patent could certainly be used as part of that — while also helping shepherd the golden age of gaming currently seen on iOS onto the next generation of Apple TV. Color us excited!

Source: USPTO

Via: Patently Apple