Apple has filed for a patent (number 20190079301) for a “face seal for a head-mounted display.” One of several such patents, it doubtless involves the company’s “Apple Glasses” headset that’s expected to debut next year.
In the patent filing, Apple says some head-mounted displays have an open design in which the user’s eyes aren’tshielded from the outside environment. Other head-mounted displays have a closed design that incorporates a face seal. The face seal is a portion of the head-mounted display that contacts the user’s face around their eyes to block exterior light.
In some designs, the face seal also helps support the head-mounted display relative to the user’s head. One typical design for a face seal is a foam structure that contacts the user’s forehead and extends around the outer sides of the user’s eyes, with a gap or recess present in the area where the user’s nose will be positioned. Apparently, Apple likes the face seal idea and thinks it can improve upon current solutions.
The patent filing involves a head-mounted display to be worn by a user includes a housing, a compressible material, and a support member. The compressible material is connected to the housing and is configured for contact with the user. The support member is disposed in the compressible material. The support member is movably connected to the housing.
You can read about more Apple patents related to Apple Glasses here.
Of course, Apple files for — and is granted — lots of patents by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Many are for inventions that never see the light of day. However, you never can tell which ones will materialize in a real product.