There are still a lot of people who always prefer physical books over the e-books, even in this 21st century. And Google has something for them too. The search giant that has experimented to read books that cannot be printed is now aiming to give the physical books a digital edge. A pair of patents has been filed by Google with the USPTO intending to reinvent how people cooperate with printed media.
The first and the most involved patent is for an “Interactive Book,” describing a physical book-like device that comes with speakers and pressure and motion sensors embedded in it. A small hamburger-shaped device plugs into the spine of the book that throws up AR type images as you turn the page, and a small speaker adds appropriate audio to the experience. For the various parts of the invention, Google has already released many patents; one of them shows how sensors discover the turning of a page to prompt audiovisual effects. Anyways, things won’t be that nice if any ads pop up during reading.
The second patent, called the “Media Enhanced Pop-up Book” is for the interactive book’s spiritual predecessor. It’s an earlier take on the augmented book that leverages a phone or tablet rather than a micro-projector to deliver added content. Each page of the book has a secondary page that opens up vertically. The device (phone or tablet) throw complementary images through to the reader by sitting on the page.
Both the patents were originally filed in early January 2015. There is no guarantee that these patents will actually come as real products or even prototype. However, the technologies are interesting especially the first one that embraces an age-old physical medium to make it digital by adding imagery and digital audio on top.