Sony VR Patent Describes Technology That Displays Advertisements Within Headsets

Folks over at Segment Next recently discovered a virtual reality patent filed by Sony Interactive Entertainment, which describes technology that enables the company to display advertisements within headsets.

Filed in 2018 but published late last month, the idea is illustrated in the image above.

An abstract reads:

A line-of-sight direction detection detects a direction of a line of sight of a user wearing a head-mounted display. A main image generation section generates a first image regarding main content selected by the user as an item to be displayed on the head-mounted display. A display control section causes the head-mounted display to display a second image regarding content different from the main content for promoting recognition of a given thing or service together with the first image. The display control section controls a manner in which the second image is displayed on the head-mounted display in accordance with the direction of the user’s line of sight. 

Sony used the example of a concert with several performers. The technology would be able to detect which performer has the user’s attention, and then display an advertisement “in accordance with the performer of interest.”

Sony considers this “a new marketing technique” whereby advertisements are displayed in both virtual reality and augmented reality spaces. The application argued that there’s currently no effective method of displaying additional content in VR and AR spaces, and this technology aims to solve that problem.

As usual, take note that patents don’t always come to fruition and merely indicate ideas that companies are toying with.

[Source: USPTO via IGN, Segment Next]