What role does sound play in augmented reality? Facebook’s FRL Research team is testing an AR sound system that gives you the power to amplify voices and attenuate background noise in real time. AR audio technology may be a key component of Facebook’s experimental AR glasses, which are still in an early stage of development.
Facebook is laser-focused on social engagement, even with its experimental AR glasses. Integrating AR audio technology into a couple of smart settings can, for example, help people communicate in a noisy bar or give you the power to tune in to a concert while talking to a friend. Sounds like a superpower, right?
The FRL Research team’s AR glasses contain a range of microphones and connect to two in-ear monitors – the stylish earphones that musicians use on stage. These microphones use close waveform shaping techniques to capture and isolate nearby sounds (including the wearer’s voice), which the wearer can pick through by pointing his head at a sound source or turning on a hardware switch.
Facebook claims that the “perceptual superpowers” generated by its AR glasses could reach VR systems such as the Oculus Rift. But unlike Facebook’s AR glasses, the Rift will not enhance real sounds. Instead, it generates a sound environment that sounds real and provides better immersion for gaming.
Facebook’s AR glasses are still an experimental product. The company has not announced plans to release AR glasses or any perceptual audio equipment.
Source: Facebook via Engadget