At the Facebook's F8 conference in April Mark Zuckerberg brought forward the idea of augmented reality (AR) that even coming from him, seemed like a bit far-fetched, at least for now. But Zuckerberg and Facebook are obviously taking their plans seriously, and it is taking shape in the form of 'ordinary looking' glasses, the development of which has already begun. Last week, a team of three researchers at Facebook's Oculus division published a patent application for a "waveguide display with two-dimensional scanner" that may be included "in an eyewear." What is behind these somewhat convoluted words?

Mixing virtual objects with the real world

The patent speaks of the initial elements for creating Augmented Reality Glasses.

As explained by Michael Abrash, chief scientist at Oculus, the number of things that could be achieved with such glasses goes beyond just playing your favorite game while you are outside. It involves everything from being at your work desk while you are commuting on a train, receiving emergency messages without having to check your mobile or seeing the name of a person you are talking with at that moment right over their head! Facebook's AR glasses are also projected to work with connected speakers or headphones.

This is certainly not the first such AR, project. It is similar technology to Microsoft's AR headset, the MagicLeap project, and the AR developed by HoloLens. Actually, it turns out that one of the developers of the Facebook project is a Finnish researcher Pasi Sarikko, who previously worked on the HoloLens project.

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As has been previously revealed by Zuckerberg, in difference to other similar projects so far, Facebook's Ar glasses are projected to have an 'ordinary' look that would be hard to distinguish from plain reading glasses or sunglasses.

Facebook making big bets on AR technology

During the F8 conference, Mark Zuckerberg already made big projections for the AR platform. He expressed the opinion that this computing platform will be even able to replace smartphones and traditional computers. Facebook acquired Oculus in 2014 for $2 billion and obviously plans to invest further billions in the development of its AR technology. Even though Abrash does not expect Facebook's AR glasses to start replacing smartphones anytime before 2022, the company has already unveiled a plan that would let outside software developers to work on the project. As explained by Facebook's CTO Mike Schroepfer, the company wants the AR software readily available when their AR glasses finally hit the reality.