Apple working on Google Glass rival?

Summary:IPhone 5? That's old tech! It appears Apple is working on a rival to the Google Glass wearable computer.

Apple-iGlasses
A first look at the patent for what may turn into Apple iGlasses.

Oh sure, you want to know about the latest iPhone 5 rumor or if Apple really going to come out with an Apple TV that's not just a little black box, but what's more exciting still is that Apple's taking out patents on wearable computers, ala Google Glass.

According to Patently Apple, a site that tracks Apple's patents, Apple has been toying with the idea of wearable computers since at least 2006. Indeed, wearable computers are far from a new idea. I first played with them in the 90s. But those were niche devices. It wasn't until Google showed off with Google Glass in June 2012 at Google I/O that the idea of a heads-up computer display in your glasses captured the publics' imagination.

Take a peek through Google glasses (photos)

Now, Apple seems to be taking the idea of "iGlasses" seriously. Besides their 2008 patent for an iPod Video Headset Display, Apple has just been granted two new heads-up display patents by the US Patent and Trademark Office (PTO).

The first, which Apple applied for in 2011, is for Video Telephonic Headset, was granted earlier in July. This has been followed quickly by another patent,  Display Resolution Increase with Mechanical Actuation. Behind that dull as dishwater title, you'll find an even drier description, but when all is said and done it's describing a glasses-like display that's meant to deliver a Retina Display to its wearer with a tiny battery.

It doesn't require a hardware engineer to see where Apple is going with this. Google is expected to release a developer release of Google Glass in early 2013. I expect Apple to follow up with its own HUD device, the iGlasses, Apple hasn't laid claim to this trademark... yet. I'm going to be keeping an eye on it.

Today, the hardware wars are over tablets and smartphones. Tomorrow, it will be HUDs.

Related Stories:

Google Glass 'explorers' start getting 'private updates' about pre-orders

Heck yeah I'd buy a Google Glass prototype

Google Glass: Should developers buy a $1,500 deep prototype?

CNET: Google Glass: $1,500 for developers, shipping next year

Topics: Apple, Google, Hardware, PCs

About

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, aka sjvn, has been writing about technology and the business of technology since CP/M-80 was the cutting edge, PC operating system; 300bps was a fast Internet connection; WordStar was the state of the art word processor; and we liked it.His work has been published in everything from highly technical publications... Full Bio

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