Sony Patent | Head Mounted Display

Patent: Head Mounted Display

Publication Number: 20200139227

Publication Date: 20200507

Applicants: Sony

Abstract

A head mounted display (HMD) is provided. In one example configuration, the HMD has housing and a view port. The view port has a screen for rendering a virtual reality scene. The HMD has a communications device for exchanging data over a network. The HMD has a depth camera integrated in the housing and oriented to capture depth data of an environment in front of the housing. A processor is provided and is configured to use the depth data captured by the depth camera to identify real objects in the environment. A real object is rendered into the virtual reality scene. The real object is tracked such that movements of the real object are shown as movements in the virtual reality scene. The real object captured by the depth camera in the environment is a hand of a user wearing the HMD. The hand of the user is rendered as a virtual hand, and movements of the virtual hand are displayed in the screen of the viewport from a perspective that is in front of the user.

CLAIM OF PRIORITY

[0001] This is a Continuation of U.S. application Ser. No. 14/996,163, filed on Jan. 14, 2016 (U.S. Pat. No. 10,525,335, issued on Jan. 7, 2020), entitled “Head Mounted Display”, and is a further Continuation of U.S. application Ser. No. 14/296,379, filed on Jun. 4, 2014 U.S. Pat. No. 9,630,098, issued on Apr. 25, 2017), and entitled “Head Mounted Display”, and which claims priority from U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/832,918, filed Jun. 9, 2013, and entitled “Head Mounted Display Gaming System,” which are incorporated herein by reference.

BACKGROUND

1.* Field of the Invention*

[0002] The present invention relates to methods and systems for gameplay using a head-mounted display (HMD) and a controller, and HMD apparatus units.

2.* Description of the Related Art*

[0003] The video game industry has seen many changes over the years. As computing power has expanded, developers of video games have likewise created game software that takes advantage of these increases in computing power. To this end, video game developers have been coding games that incorporate sophisticated operations and mathematics to produce a very realistic game experience. However, gaming using HMD devices still need much improvement.

[0004] It is in this context that embodiments of the invention arise.

SUMMARY

[0005] Embodiments of the present invention provide methods and systems for rendering games on a head mounted display (HMD). In some embodiments, game play may be correlating or carried out with a controller used by a user. The methods define ways of tracking the HMD and the controller and providing immersive interactivity. The tracked HMD and controller enable correlated interactive play within three-dimensional spaces. It should be appreciated that the present invention can be implemented in numerous ways, such as a process, an apparatus, a system, a device or a method on a computer readable medium. Several inventive embodiments of the present invention are described below.

[0006] In one embodiment, a system and method for operating a head mounted display (HMD) are provided. The HMD has a head attachment portion and a viewing module coupled to the head attachment portion. The viewing module includes an inner side having a view port into a screen configuring for rendering a virtual reality scene and an exterior housing. A communications module for exchanging data with a computer system is provided and the computer system is configured to generate the virtual reality scene for the screen. A depth camera is integrated into the viewing module and is oriented to capture depth data of an environment in front of the exterior housing. One method includes processing, by the computer system, the depth data captured by the depth camera to identify hands of a user waring the HMD in the environment. The hands are rendered into the virtual reality scene. The hands are tracked such that movements of the hands appear as movements of virtual hands extending into the virtual reality scene.

[0007] In another embodiment, a head mounted display is disclosed, which includes a head attachment portion. Also included is a viewing module coupled to the head attachment portion. The viewing module includes an inner portion having a view port into a screen configuring for rendering image content, and an exterior housing. Further included is a plurality illuminating elements integrated with the exterior housing of the viewing module. The plurality of illumination elements defined for image tracking of the head mounted display, and illumination logic for controlling the plurality of illumination elements to be active or inactive.

[0008] In some embodiments, the data exchanged by the communications module includes input data, image data, audio data, and inertial data.

[0009] In some embodiments, the plurality illuminating elements are defined as light emitting diodes (LEDs) or infrared (IR) emitters.

[0010] In some embodiments, the LEDs are defined to illuminate one or more colors, the illumination of the one or more colors being controlled by illumination logic.

[0011] In some embodiments, the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a defined pattern on the exterior housing.

[0012] In some embodiments, the exterior housing has a partially curved shape, and the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a pattern about the partially curved shape.

[0013] In some embodiments, the exterior housing has multiple surface regions, and the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a pattern about the multiple surface regions.

[0014] In some embodiments, wherein the plurality of illumination elements include two or more shapes or sizes.

[0015] In some embodiments, wherein additional ones of the plurality of illumination elements are connected to the head attachment portion.

[0016] In another embodiment, a head mounted display (HMD) is disclosed. The HMD includes a head attachment portion for placement on a head of a user and a viewing module coupled to the head attachment portion and configured for placement in front of eyes of a user. The viewing module includes an inner side having a view port into a screen configuring for rendering image content and an exterior housing that surrounds the inner side. The HMD further includes a communications module for exchanging data with a computer system. The data includes input data, image data, audio data, and inertial data (and others data is possible). The HMD also includes an image processing module for processing the image data for rendering the image content on the screen and a plurality illuminating elements integrated with the exterior housing of the viewing module. The plurality of illumination elements are defined for image tracking of the head mounted display by a camera. The HMD also includes illumination logic for controlling particular ones of the plurality of illumination elements to be active and/or inactive at particular times, or on during use.

[0017] In some embodiments, the exterior housing has a front facing portion, a first side portion, and a second side portion.

[0018] In some embodiments, a first of the plurality of illumination elements is disposed on a left side of the front facing portion and a second of the plurality of illumination elements is disposed on a right side of the front facing portion.

[0019] In some embodiments, the first of the plurality of illumination elements has a two-part shape that is disposed partially in the front facing portion and the first side portion, and the second of the plurality of illumination elements has a two-part shape that is disposed partially in the front facing portion and the second side portion.

[0020] In some embodiments, the plurality illuminating elements are defined as light emitting diodes (LEDs) or infrared (IR) emitters.

[0021] In some embodiments, the LEDs are defined to illuminate one or more colors, the illumination of the one or more colors being controlled by illumination logic.

[0022] In some embodiments, the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a defined pattern on the exterior housing.

[0023] In some embodiments, the communications module is one of a wired connection or wireless connection with the computer.

[0024] In some embodiments, the inertial data is generated by the head mounted display in response to detected movement when worn by the user.

[0025] In some embodiments, the input data is generated by the head mounted display in response to user input when worn by the user.

[0026] In some embodiments, the audio data and the image data is associated with interactive media content to be rendered at the head mounted display.

[0027] In some embodiments, the interactive media content includes game data, video data, internet navigation data, combinations of game data and internet data, social media data, or combinations thereof.

[0028] In some embodiments, the exterior housing has a partially curved shape, and the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a pattern about the partially curved shape.

[0029] In some embodiments, the exterior housing has multiple surface regions, and the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a pattern about the multiple surface regions.

[0030] In some embodiments, the plurality of illumination elements include two or more shapes or sizes.

[0031] In some embodiments, additional ones of the plurality of illumination elements are connected to the head attachment portion.

[0032] In some embodiments, the plurality illuminating elements are arranged in a defined pattern on the exterior housing.

[0033] In another embodiment, a head mounted display is disclosed. The head mounted display includes a body that includes a head attachment portion and a viewing module. The viewing module includes an inner portion having a view port into a screen configuring for rendering image content, and the body includes an exterior housing covering the view module. The head mounted display further includes a plurality illuminating elements integrated with the exterior housing of the viewing module. The plurality of illumination elements are defined for image tracking of the head mounted display. The plurality of illumination elements are arranged in pattern. Also included is illumination logic for controlling the plurality of illumination elements to be active to facilitate the image tracking.

[0034] A method for executing a game presented on a screen of a head mounted display (HMD) is provided. Execution renders interactive scenes of the game on the screen. The method includes receiving data of the HMD worn by a user to identify an HMD spatial position. The method also includes receiving data of a controller held by the user to identify a controller spatial position. During game play, the method includes rendering a point of view into the interactive scenes of the game on the screen, where the point of view is a volume of space rendered in three-dimensions. The method includes adjusting the point of view as the HMD spatial position is detected to change. The controller can drive interactivity in the game and changes in position of the controller and the HMD are correlated to provide an immersive three-dimensional game play experience.

[0035] In some embodiments, the controller provides input that drives interactivity.

[0036] In some embodiments, changes in the controller spatial position provide additional input.

[0037] In some embodiments, the additional input includes one of lights or inertial data.

[0038] In some embodiments, the lights provide location data when viewed by a camera and a color of the lights provide additional data.

[0039] In some embodiments, the color indicates player number or mode or setting based on room conditions.

[0040] In some embodiments, the controller is represented in the interactive scenes as a virtual object, the virtual object rendered in the interactive scenes in a virtual spatial position that substantially maps to the controller spatial position, and changes in the controller spatial position change the virtual spatial position of the virtual object as shown on the screen.

[0041] In another a method for executing a game presented on a screen of a head mounted display (HMD) is provided. The method includes executing a game, where the execution renders interactive scenes of the game on the screen. The method includes: receiving data of the HMD worn by a user to identify an HMD spatial position; receiving data of a controller held by the user to identify a controller spatial position; rendering a point of view into the interactive scenes of the game on the screen; and adjusting the point of view as the HMD spatial position is detected to change, the method being executed by a processor.

[0042] In some embodiments, the controller is represented in the interactive scenes as a virtual object, the virtual object rendered in the interactive scenes in virtual spatial position that maps to the controller spatial position, and changes in the controller spatial position change the virtual spatial position of the virtual object.

[0043] In some embodiments, the interactive scenes are rendered in a three-dimension format, such that objects in the interactive scenes appear in front of the HMD and extend a distance into the interactive scenes.

[0044] In some embodiments, the HMD and controller spatial positions are tracked using one or more of image data, inertial data, wireless data, infrared data, or combinations thereof.

[0045] In some embodiments, tracking using image data includes detecting one or both of the HMD and controller spatial positions using a stereo camera that provides depth data.

[0046] In another embodiment, a method for executing a game presented on a screen of a head mounted display (HMD) is provided. The method includes executing a game, where the execution renders interactive scenes of the game on the screen. The method includes: receiving images of the HMD worn by a user to identify an HMD spatial position relative to a capture location that is directed toward the user; receiving images of a controller held by the user to identify a controller spatial position relative to the capture location, the controller providing input to at least partially drive interaction with the game being executed; rendering a point of view into the interactive scenes of the game on the screen; and adjusting the point of view as the HMD spatial position is detected to change in the received images of the HMD.

[0047] In some embodiments, the controller is represented in the interactive scenes as a virtual object, the virtual object rendered in the interactive scenes in a virtual spatial position that maps to the controller spatial position, and changes in the controller spatial position change the virtual spatial position of the virtual object.

[0048] In some embodiments, the game is executed on a computer that is communicative connected to the head mounted display.

[0049] In some embodiments, the game is executed on a game cloud and the head mounted display is communicatively connected to the game cloud.

[0050] In some embodiments, each of the HMD spatial position and the controller spatial position is additionally identifiable by inertial data.

[0051] Other aspects of the invention will become apparent from the following detailed description, taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, illustrating by way of example the principles of the invention.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0052] The invention may best be understood by reference to the following description taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings in which:

[0053] FIG. 1 illustrates a system for interactive gameplay of a video game, in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

[0054] FIG. 2 illustrates a head-mounted display (HMD), in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

[0055] FIG. 3 conceptually illustrates the function of a HMD in conjunction with an executing video game, in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

[0056] FIG. 4A-4B illustrate examples of virtual spaces viewable in 3D from the HMD and interactions with a controller and coordination thereof, in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

[0057] FIGS. 5A-9B illustrate additional examples of a user wearing an HMD and holding controllers and changing the viewpoints into the interactive scene generated for video games, in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

[0058] FIGS. 10 and 11 illustrate a user wearing an HMD and holding a controller, when interfacing with a video game.

[0059] FIG. 12 illustrates components of a head-mounted display, in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

[0060] FIG. 13 is a block diagram of a Game System, according to various embodiments of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0061] FIG. 1 illustrates a system for interactive gameplay of a video game, in accordance with an embodiment of the invention. Although examples are provided herein with reference to video games and games, the embodiments can also be used in different environments and tools. Such environments can include business tool environments, presentations tools, conference call systems, virtual visit programs, virtual project collaboration, sharing of information and social interactions, social networking, social data mining, communication, etc.

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