Tobii has filed a patent for an assembly designed for an eye-tracking system. The assembly includes a ring-shaped carrier, a seat, light emitting devices on a substrate, an alignment window with an opening, and an imaging device. The carrier is designed to guide light emitted from the light emitting devices towards the user’s eye. This invention can also be used in a head-mounted device. GlobalData’s report on Tobii gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

According to GlobalData’s company profile on Tobii, metaverse display interfaces was a key innovation area identified from patents. Tobii's grant share as of September 2023 was 51%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

An assembly for an eye-tracking system with light emitting devices

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: Tobii AB

A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20230314797A1) describes an assembly for an eye-tracking system. The assembly includes a ring-shaped carrier with a seat, where a substrate holding multiple light emitting devices is positioned. The carrier also features an alignment window with an opening, within which an imaging device is placed. The carrier is designed to direct light emitted from the light emitting devices towards the user's eye when used with the eye-tracking system.

One notable feature of the assembly, as mentioned in claim 2, is that the ring-shaped carrier has a varying local radius of curvature. This design element likely contributes to the assembly's ability to effectively guide light towards the user's eye.

The light emitting devices mentioned in claim 3 are specifically identified as light emitting diodes (LEDs). These LEDs are positioned on a printed circuit board (PCB), as stated in claim 4. The substrate holding the light emitting devices is a strip of the PCB, as mentioned in claim 5. Additionally, the substrate includes adhesive layers on the top and bottom, sandwiching the PCB, as stated in claim 6.

The carrier itself is made of a near infra-red (NIR) transparent material, as mentioned in claim 7. This material likely allows for the transmission of NIR light, which is commonly used in eye-tracking systems.

The assembly may also include a cover adjacent to the imaging device, as stated in claim 8. Furthermore, an optical filter can be arranged behind the imaging device, as mentioned in claim 9.

Claim 10 introduces the addition of a lens mounted in the carrier, which further enhances the functionality of the assembly.

Finally, claim 11 describes the use of this assembly in a head-mounted device (HMD) for extended reality (XR) applications. The HMD includes at least one assembly according to claim 10, along with a head-mounted display.

Overall, this patent describes an assembly for an eye-tracking system that utilizes a ring-shaped carrier, light emitting devices, an imaging device, and various additional components to effectively guide light towards the user's eye. The assembly's design and features make it suitable for use in head-mounted devices for extended reality applications.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.