About four years ago, Ben Kunz writing for Bloomberg Businessweek, predicted that Apple devices will someday project holograms “like you’ve never seen.” He may have been onto something. The company has been granted another patent (number 10,188,288) for such tech.
Dubbed an “information system and method for providing information using a holographic element,” it involves presenting the info in correlation with light that is incident on an eye includes a holographic element disposed in front of the eye and a device capable of recording optical signals which detects light that is incident on the eye via the holographic element. The device capable of recording optical signals detects light which is diffracted by the holographic element before the light impinges on the eye such that the diffracted light does not enter the eye.
According to Apple’s description of the invention, the information can be provided to user in a tactile, visual, audible, smellable and/or tastable manner. The data an be provided “in a suitable manner, that is, by utilizing one or more of the five senses.” For example, the information can be provided electromagnetically, mechanically and/or optically to another system or may be emitted by an optical or acoustic output system into the environment.
Other hologram-related patents from Apple include a three-dimensional display system that would “mimic a hologram” without requiring special glasses, a display with holographic angle-of-view adjustment structures, and a vehicle onboard holographic communication system.
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.