Patent published on November 14, 2023

Patent Promises Toyota AR Glasses Could Counteract Motion Sickness

Everyday commuters, passengers on long-haul trips and kids traveling in the back seat have experienced the discomfort of motion sickness. This common but often unaddressed problem is now the focus of a promising new patent, US11815695B2, issued to the car manufacturing giant, Toyota.

Motion sickness often occurs when our brains get conflicted information from our eyes and our bodies about whether or not we are actually moving, causing discomfort, dizziness, and, for some, even nausea. This is common for car trips, especially for those who are reading or watching something during the journey. Quite a significant issue for people in our fast-paced world where every minute counts. Likely, it is one that becomes more pronounced as we gravitate towards autonomous vehicles where passengers will have even more freedom to focus on activities other than driving.

Toyota's new Image Display System, as per the patent, is intended to counteract the unpleasant effects of motion sickness. It's like a special pair of glasses that work with computer-like technology in a vehicle. It's not just any pair of glasses, but ones that can display images and adapt to the movements of both the wearer and the vehicle. Imagine having your very own heads-up display, much like those seen in popular spy films such as Mission Impossible.

Once fully developed and made available to the public, applications of this invention could be broad. Commuters would now be able to read documents or watch videos during commute without feeling sick. Kids on family road trips can enjoy their cartoons in peace. Long-haul passengers in trains or buses could read or work without discomfort during the journey. In a world with Toyota's AR Glasses, traveling would become a more pleasant experience for millions susceptible to motion sickness.

It should be noted, though, that at this point in time, this technology lives only in the form of a patent. That means our ability to ward off motion sickness with a cool pair of AR glasses from Toyota isn't a guarantee. While it gives us intrigue into Toyota’s vision for the future, patents aren't product announcements. We will have to patiently wait to see if this innovative move anticipates a forthcoming line of AR wearables from Toyota.

P.S. It's important to keep in mind that while a patent suggests an area of development Toyota is exploring, it doesn't assure the resulting technology will make it to market. A lot of research and development goes into bringing these inventive ideas to life, and sometimes, promising as they might be, they don't become a reality for consumers.

Explore more