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Universal patents new virtual-reality glasses for rides (Richard Bilbao)

Universal Parks & Resorts is looking into how to enhance virtual-reality headsets and improve immersion.

The theme park company, which operates Universal Orlando Resort, filed a patent dubbed, “Front and Peripheral View Lens Area for Virtual Reality Headsets,” which describes a multi-lens headset.

Why this matters: Patents provide a peek into what theme park designers and creative departments see as improvements to theme parks. Ride systems are a key part of theme park innovation, and new rides draw more visitors, which boosts Orlando’s $75 billion tourism industry.

The patent describes the technology as a virtual-reality headset with an optical element that enables viewing of content displayed on one or more screens in the headset. The optical element may have left and right lenses positioned over a primary high-definition screen on which a main image can be seen by the user, said the patent.

The additional lenses may help depict special effects that improve the immersion of an experience, which would enhance its overall effect.