According to the rumors, Apple could be working on an augmented reality (AR) headset, and the company’s latest acquisition could be hinting at that. In a report from MacRumors, it seems that Apple might have acquired a company in Germany called SensoMotoric Instruments, a company that specializes in eye-tracking glasses and systems.
Neither Apple nor SensoMotoric Instruments has officially or publicly confirmed the acquisition (we expect even if they did it would be a rather boilerplate announcement), so take it with a grain of salt for now. However MacRumors has compiled a set of evidence that appears to more or less “confirm” it.
Putting aside whether or not Apple has acquired the company, like we said SensoMotoric’s specialty comes in the form of eye-tracking technology, as you can see in the demonstration above. The company’s technology has also been used in VR headsets such as the Oculus Rift where it tracks the wearer’s gaze in an attempt to reduce motion sickness, and we expect that should Apple create an AR-based headset, eye-tracking is definitely a feature we wouldn’t be surprised could be part of it.
Apple’s interest in AR isn’t a secret and at WWDC this year, the company announced ARKit that would help developers create AR-based apps for iOS. They have even teamed up with IKEA, and in the past we have also seen Apple acquire other AR companies such as Metaio.