Apple is still working on AR smart glasses and two recent patents show some impressive innovations — better thermal ergonomics and eyewear stabilization

Glasses on a MacBook
(Image credit: Future)

We’ve known about Apple’s AR glasses for a while but two recent patents have revealed more about the illusive goggles than the previous two years, and there’s already some interesting tech in place. 

The first patent, spotted by PatentlyApple last week, revealed that Apple filed the first one for an “eyewear system” that ensures the glasses sit on your nose correctly by fastening a nose pad. To an extent, this exists on standard glasses already but can slip when pressure is applied or sweat lands on them. Apple’s smartglasses seem to be designed to be used even while active, which is achieved through springs, and a securement arm.

AR glasses can enhance your everyday life through digital calendars, displays, and more, so making them effective in an active space is essential. We saw the benefit of a pair of smart glasses last year with the TCL RayNeo Air 2, so iMore is looking forward to seeing what Apple does with this space. 

It’s worth mentioning here that assembly can be done even with prescription lenses, accounting for some level of customizability. It has a smart function that can adjust its grip depending on your actions or where it is sitting on your head. 

Getting smarter

The second patent, also spotted by PatentlyApple, is all about thermal ergonomics. Essentially, AR glasses like those intended to be used with extra screens, need to be comfortable enough to justify spending multiple hours in. If they are uncomfortable or get too hot, you may just opt to leave them off entirely. 

In the patent, it displays an outward-facing surface near the user's ears, that dissipates heat generated by the display and components. It’s important to note that both of these patents have a direct effect on potential AR smartglasses but could also work in future versions of the coveted Apple Vision Pro, which is set to launch this year.

Instead of being a competitor to Apple’s AR headset, the AR smartglasses could work as a cheaper entry point into the AR ecosystem. Hopefully, we’ll know a little more about where these could fit, once the Apple Vision Pro launches later this year.

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James Bentley

James is a staff writer and general Jack of all trades at iMore. With news, features, reviews, and guides under his belt, he has always liked Apple for its unique branding and distinctive style. Originally buying a Macbook for music and video production, he has since gone on to join the Apple ecosystem with as many devices as he can fit on his person. 

With a degree in Law and Media and being a little too young to move onto the next step of his law career, James started writing from his bedroom about games, movies, tech, and anything else he could think of. Within months, this turned into a fully-fledged career as a freelance journalist. Before joining iMore, he was a staff writer at Gfinity and saw himself published at sites like TechRadar, NME, and Eurogamer. 

As his extensive portfolio implies, James was predominantly a games journalist before joining iMore and brings with him a unique perspective on Apple itself. When not working, he is trying to catch up with the movies and albums of the year, as well as finally finishing the Yakuza series. If you like Midwest emo music or pretentious indie games that will make you cry, he’ll talk your ear off.