Qualcomm Patent | User Interface For Controlling Audio Zones

Patent: User Interface For Controlling Audio Zones

Publication Number: 20200053464

Publication Date: 20200213

Applicants: Qualcomm

Abstract

Disclosed are techniques and devices which include a memory configured to store audio data within a first audio zone, or a second audio zone in a layered soundfield. The memory is coupled to one or more processors and the memory is configured to store the audio data in the first audio zone and the second audio data in the layered soundfield. The one or more processors are configured to receive an interaction command to control the audio data in the first audio zone and the second audio zone in the layered soundfield, and generate one or more indicators that the interaction command was received to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone of the layered soundfield.

TECHNICAL FIELD

[0001] This disclosure relates to user interface of media data, such as audio data.

BACKGROUND

[0002] In recent years, there is an increasing interest in Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and Mixed Reality (MR) technologies. Advances to image processing and computer vision technologies in the wireless space, have led to better rendering and computational resources allocated to improving the visual quality and immersive visual experience of these technologies.

[0003] In VR technologies, virtual information may be presented to a user using a head-mounted display such that the user may visually experience an artificial world on a screen in front of their eyes. In AR technologies, the real-world is augmented by visual objects that are super-imposed, or, overlaid on physical objects in the real-world. The augmentation may insert new visual objects or mask visual objects to the real-world environment. In MR technologies, the boundary between what’s real or synthetic/virtual and visually experienced by a user is becoming difficult to discern.

SUMMARY

[0004] This disclosure relates generally to auditory aspects of the user experience of computer-mediated reality systems, including virtual reality (VR), mixed reality (MR), augmented reality (AR), computer vision, and graphics systems. The techniques may include a memory configured to store audio data within a first audio zone or second audio zone in a layered soundfield. The memory may be coupled to one or more processors that are configured to receive an interaction command to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, in the layered soundfield. The one or more processors may also be configure to generate one or more indicators that the interaction command was received to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, of the layered soundfield.

[0005] The techniques may also include a method which includes receiving an interaction command to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, in the layered soundfield. The method may also include generating one or more indicators that the interaction command was received to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, of the layered soundfield.

[0006] Moreover, the techniques may be implemented in an apparatus which includes means for receiving an interaction command to control audio data, in a first audio zone or a second audio zone, in a layered soundfield. The apparatus may also include means for generating one or more indicators that the interaction command was receiving to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, of the layered soundfield.

[0007] The details of one or more examples of this disclosure are set forth in the accompanying drawings and the description below. Other features, objects, and advantages of various aspects of the techniques will be apparent from the description and drawings, and from the claims.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS

[0008] FIG. 1a illustrates a representation of display device that may be an AR, MR, or VR device.

[0009] FIG. 1b illustrates a representation of display device that may be an AR, MR, or VR device.

[0010] FIG. 1c illustrates a representation of a scene associated with one or more audio zones that may be used when performing various aspects of the techniques in this disclosure.

[0011] FIG. 2a illustrates a representation of two views. The first view, on the left part of the figure, is a representation of one or more audio zones relative to an initial user location. The second view, on the right part of the figure, is a representation of the one or more audio zones relative to the user location after a translational and/or orientational movement of the user.

[0012] FIG. 2b illustrates visualization of a layered soundfield and two views representing a first and second device position.

[0013] FIG. 2c illustrates a representation of an audio blocking application.

[0014] FIG. 2d and FIG. 2e, illustrate amplification and/or attenuation of audio data within different audio zones in a layered soundfield.

[0015] FIG. 2f. illustrates the tracking of an audio zone which moves proportionally with a movement of the device from a first device position to a second device position, but the second audio zone remains static relative to the movement of the device from the first device position to the second device position.

[0016] FIG. 3-a and FIG. 3-b illustrate an external object interacting with the display device.

[0017] FIG. 4 is a block diagram illustrating blocks that may be used to implement techniques in accordance with the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0018] FIG. 5a is a block diagram illustrating example inputs and outputs of a zone control unit which may be used to perform the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0019] FIG. 5b is another block diagram illustrating example inputs and outputs of the zone control unit which may be used to perform the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0020] FIG. 5c is a block diagram illustrating more granularity around the inputs and outputs of the zone control unit which may be used to perform the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0021] FIG. 6 is a block diagram illustrating one embodiment of the zone control unit that may be used to perform the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0022] FIG. 7a is a block diagram illustrating a second embodiment the zone control unit that may be used to perform the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0023] FIG. 7b is a block diagram illustrating a third embodiment of the zone control unit that may be used to perform the various aspects of this disclosure.

[0024] FIG. 8 is a flowchart illustrating an example process that may be performed in accordance with various aspects of this disclosure.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

[0025] Particular implementations of the present disclosure are described below with reference to the drawings. In the description, common features are designated by common reference numbers throughout the drawings. As used herein, various terminology is used for the purpose of describing particular implementations only and is not intended to be limiting. For example, the singular forms “a,”, “an,” and “the” are intended to include the plural forms as well, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. It may be further understood that the terms “comprise,” “comprises,” and “comprising” may be used interchangeably with “include,” “includes,” or “including.” Additionally, it will be understood that the term “wherein” may be used interchangeably with “where.” As used herein, “exemplary” may indicate an example, an implementation, and/or an aspect, and should not be construed as limiting or as indicating a preference or a preferred implementation. As used herein, an ordinal term (e.g., “first,” “second,” “third,” etc.) used to modify an element, such as a structure, a component, an operation, etc., does not by itself indicate any priority or order of the element with respect to another element, but rather merely distinguishes the element from another element having a same name (but for use of the ordinal term). As used herein, the term “set” refers to a grouping of one or more elements, and the term “plurality” refers to multiple elements.

[0026] As used herein “coupled” may include “communicatively coupled,” “electrically coupled,” or “physically coupled,” and may also (or alternatively) include any combinations thereof. Two devices (or components) may be coupled (e.g., communicatively coupled, electrically coupled, or physically coupled) directly or indirectly via one or more other devices, components, wires, buses, networks (e.g., a wired network, a wireless network, or a combination thereof), etc. Two devices (or components) that are electrically coupled may be included in the same device or in different devices and may be connected via electronics, one or more connectors, or inductive coupling, as illustrative, non-limiting examples. In some implementations, two devices (or components) that are communicatively coupled, such as in electrical communication, may send and receive electrical signals (digital signals or analog signals) directly or indirectly, such as via one or more wires, buses, networks, etc. As used herein, “directly coupled” may include two devices that are coupled (e.g., communicatively coupled, electrically coupled, or physically coupled) without intervening components.

[0027] As used herein, “integrated” may include “manufactured or sold with”. A device may be integrated if a user buys a package that bundles or includes the device as part of the package. In some descriptions, two devices may be coupled, but not necessarily integrated (e.g., different peripheral devices may not be integrated to a command device, but still may be “coupled”). Another example may be that any of the transceivers or antennas described herein that may be “coupled” to a processor, but not necessarily part of the package that includes an AR, VR or MR device. Other examples may be inferred from the context disclosed herein, including this paragraph, when using the term “integrated”.

[0028] As used herein “a wireless” connection between devices may be based on various wireless technologies, such as Bluetooth, Wireless-Fidelity (Wi-Fi) or variants of Wi-Fi (e.g. Wi-Fi Direct. Devices may be “wirelessly connected” based on different cellular communication systems, such as, a Long-Term Evolution (LTE) system, a Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) system, a Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) system, a wireless local area network (WLAN) system, or some other wireless system. A CDMA system may implement Wideband CDMA (WCDMA), CDMA 1X, Evolution-Data Optimized (EVDO), Time Division Synchronous CDMA (TD-SCDMA), or some other version of CDMA. In addition, when two devices are within line of sight, a “wireless connection” may also be based on other wireless technologies, such as ultrasound, infrared, pulse radio frequency electromagnetic energy, structured light, or directional of arrival techniques used in signal processing (e.g. audio signal processing or radio frequency processing).

[0029] As used herein A “and/or” B may mean that either “A and B”, or “A or B”, or both “A and B” and “A or B” are applicable or acceptable.

[0030] The term “computing device” is used generically herein to refer to any one or all of servers, personal computers, laptop computers, tablet computers, mobile devices, cellular telephones, smartbooks, ultrabooks, palm-top computers, personal data assistants (PDA’s), wireless electronic mail receivers, multimedia Internet-enabled cellular telephones, Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers, wireless gaming controllers, and similar electronic devices which include a programmable processor and circuitry for wirelessly sending and/or receiving information

[0031] As used herein, independently control may include manipulation, adjustment or rotation of audio data within one audio zone that is independent of a second audio zone. For example, in one audio zone audio data may be compensated (an example of an adjustment) for loudness while in another audio zone audio data may be dynamically range compressed. In another example, the audio zone, the audio data in one audio zone maybe rotated, while audio zone in a different audio zone is equalized. Typically, audio data exists within an entire soundfield and is manipulated or adjusted all at once, without the ability to segment a three-dimensional soundfield into different audio zones as described herein. If audio data that is part of a soundfield is manipulated or adjusted, it is not done in two audio zones with the ability to control two different types of operations (e.g., loudness compensation, equalization, rotation, dynamic range compession, etc.) in parallel and independently.

[0032] As used herein, “mapping points” may include sampling points or samples of a soundfield of an audible scene. Audible scenes are three-dimensional and the sampling points may be uniformly spaced or non-uniformly spaced within the three-dimensional soundfield. Mapping points may be visualized, for example, as part of a user interface, but do not necessarily have to be visualized. AR, VR and/or MR devices may include displays that project a visual scene. Where audible scenes and visual scenes co-exist to represent a three-dimensional space, mapping points may represent pixels of a video object, as sound in a soundfield may be associated with or near the video object. There may be different types of audio formats, where the audio format is a scene-based audio format, the mapping points may be anchor points, but do not necessarily have to be anchor points. Mapping points (o) may also be interest points (x). An audio object or source, or an ambient sound source may comprise a number of mapping points. The mapping points may be clustered together through an association to an audio object or source, or ambient source to form one or more interest points to represent the audio object or source, or ambient sound source. In one example, the audio source or object may be an “impulse”, in such a case the mapping point and the interest point are one in the same.

[0033] An interest point, as used herein, may be a cluster of a number of mapping points. In some examples, the location of the sound source or ambient sound, may be an audio interest point. In other examples, a video object or cluster of pixels may be used to generate a visual interest point. The visual interest point and audio interest point may be included in the cluster of mapping points.

[0034] As used herein, a unit can include, for example, a special purpose hardwired circuitry, software and/or firmware in conjunction with programmable circuitry, or a combination thereof.

[0035] References in this specification to “an embodiment”, “one embodiment”, or the like, mean that the particular feature, structure or characteristic being described is included in at least one embodiment of the present invention. Occurrences of such phrases in this specification do not necessarily all refer to the same embodiment. On the other hand, different embodiments may not be mutually exclusive either.

[0036] An audio zone is a collection of interest points. The audio zone’s dimensions are based on including one or more audio sound sources within a spatial region of the soundfield. When a visual object that makes a sound is included, the audio zone may include the visual object from where the sound is emanating and enclose audio data that includes an audio source or audio source(s) and/or an ambient sound source.

[0037] The terms “AR device”, “MR device” and/or “VR device” may be integrated with any electronic device that includes circuitry for wirelessly sending and/or receiving information, including any one or all of cellular telephones, personal or mobile multi-media players, watches, wrist displays, medical devices, headsets, headphones, and/or standalone AR/MR/VR devices, speakers, microphones, computing devices, and other similar electronics.

[0038] Though full three-dimensional audible rendering still poses challenges, the techniques in this disclosure enable a further step towards that end. Audio aspects of AR, MR, and/or VR may be classified into three separate categories of immersion. The first category provides the lowest level of immersion and is referred to as three degrees of freedom (3DOF). 3DOF refers to audio rendering that accounts for movement of the head in the three degrees of freedom (yaw, pitch, and roll), thereby allowing the user to freely look around in any direction. 3DOF, however, cannot account for translational (and orientational) head movements in which the head is not centered on the optical and acoustical center of the soundfield.

[0039] The second category, referred to 3DOF plus (3DOF+), provides for the three degrees of freedom (yaw, pitch, and roll) in addition to limited spatial translational (and orientational) movements due to the head movements away from the optical center and acoustical center within the soundfield. 3DOF+ may provide support for perceptual effects such as motion parallax, which may strengthen the sense of immersion.

[0040] The third category, referred to as six degrees of freedom (6DOF), renders audio data in a manner that accounts for the three degrees of freedom in term of head movements (yaw, pitch, and roll) but also accounts for translation of a person in space (x, y, and z translations). The spatial translations may be induced by sensors tracking the location of the person in the physical world or by way of an input controller.

[0041] Audio aspects of VR may be less immersive than the video aspects, thereby potentially reducing the overall immersion experienced by the user. However, with the advances in processors and wireless connectivity it may be possible to achieve 6DOF rendering with wearable AR, MR and/or VR devices. Moreover, in the future it may be possible to take into account movement of a vehicle that has the capabilities of AR, MR and/or VR devices and provide an immersive audio experience. In addition, a person of ordinary skill would recognize that a mobile device, e.g. a handset may also implement VR, AR, and/or MR techniques.

[0042] In accordance with the techniques described in this disclosure, various ways by which to adjust audio data (whether in an audio channel format, an audio object format, and/or an audio scene-based format) may allow for 6DOF audio rendering. 6DOF rendering provides a more immersive listening experience by rendering audio data in a manner that accounts for both the three degrees of freedom in term of head movements (yaw, pitch, and roll) and translational movements (in a spatial three-dimensional coordinate system–x, y, z). In implementation, where the head movements may not be centered on the optical and acoustical center adjustments may be made to provide for 6DOF rendering, and not necessarily be limited to spatial two-dimensional coordinate systems. As disclosed herein, the following figures and descriptions allow for 6DOF audio rendering.

[0043] As disclosed herein, the following figures and descriptions allow for 6DOF audio rendering, as well as, user interface techniques that allow for the user-selected enabling/disabling of 3DOF, 3DOF+, and/or 6DOF headtracking. In addition, user interface techniques are described for attenuating or amplifying audio data within different audio zones and in a layered soundfield.

[0044] FIG. 1a illustrates a representation of display device 102 that may be an AR, MR, and/or VR device. A person may wear the device 102. The device 102 may be an AR, MR and/or VR device. The device 102 may include one or more sensors may include an orientation/translation unit, a visual unit, and/or an audio capture device. Though the device 102 is drawn as a wearable device, there may be other form factors for the device 102. For example, the device 102 may be included in a vehicle (not expressly drawn), or a robot (not expressly drawn), or other electronic devices (not expressly drawn) that have capabilities of AR MR or VR. The device 102 may be coupled to speakers associated with the device 102. The speakers may also be integrated with the device 102 or may be external to the device 102.

[0045] An AR, VR and/or MR device 102 may also include other types of wearable devices besides those shown. For example, watches (such as so-called “smart watches”), glasses (such as so-called “smart glasses”), headphones (including wireless headphones coupled via a wireless connection, or smart headphones coupled via wired or wireless connection), and any other type of wearable device may be an AR, VR, and/or MR device 102. As such, various techniques disclosed herein may be performed by a number of wearable devices by which a user may interact with the wearable device while worn by the user.

[0046] FIG. 1b representation of display device that may be an AR, MR, and/or VR device. A person may wear a device 140. The device 140 may be an AR, MR or VR device. The device 140 may include an orientation/translation unit, a visual sensor, and/or an audio capture device. The orientation/translation unit may provide one or more measurements representative of the movement of the device 140. Though the device 140 is drawn as a wearable device, there may be other form factors for the device 140. For example, the device 140 may be included in a vehicle (not expressly drawn), or a robot (not expressly drawn), or other electronic devices (not expressly drawn) that have capabilities of AR, MR, and/or VR.

[0047] Similar to the device 102 illustrated in FIG. 1a, an AR, VR and/or MR device 140 may also include other types of wearable devices besides those shown. For example, watches (such as so-called “smart watches”), glasses (such as so-called “smart glasses”), headphones (including wireless headphones coupled via a wireless connection, or smart headphones coupled via wired or wireless connection), and any other type of wearable device may be an AR, VR, and/or MR device 140.

[0048] A device that covers a person’s eyes without letting in light from the outside may appear as in FIG. 1b and may be associated with a VR device. However, AR, MR, and/or VR devices may have different form factors. For example, an AR, MR and/or VR device may have a display screen that allows for external video objects or a video scene to be viewed, or alternatively, multiple display screens (e.g., translucent screens or projective screens) may be included in a device to perform either AR, MR, and/or VR. Thus, a form factor such as FIG. 1a or FIG. 1b may be used for AR, MR and/or VR devices. The device 140 in FIG. 1b is also coupled to speakers 144.

[0049] FIG. 1c illustrates a representation of a scene associated with one or more audio zones that may be used when performing various aspects of the techniques in this disclosure. In FIG. 1c, the representation may appear two-dimensional or three-dimensional. The representation may include visual objects, audible objects and/or visual objects and audible objects. A portion of a display screen 90 on a display device 100 (see FIG. 4) may be used to represent visual objects in the scene. For example, in FIG. 1c, there is part of a dog 7A in the lower left of the display screen 90, a woman 7B near the top of the display screen 90, and a man 7C speaking with the woman 7B near the top of the display screen 90, and another man 7C in the lower part of the display screen 90. Superimposed in the screen 90 are mapping points (o) associated with an AR, MR and/or VR device. The mapping points may be uniformly spaced or non-uniformly spaced. The mapping points may be uniformly spaced or non-uniformly spaced. The mapping points may or may not be visualized. Neither the mapping points nor the interest points in this disclosure have to necessarily be anchor points. An audio zone and tracking of an audio zone may allow for more independent flexibility to process and control audio data. The audio data operated on is not limited to an ambisonics domain (as used in scene-based audio formats, but with other formats, e.g. channel and/or object format). Moreover, video objects may be associated with audio zones, which in some embodiments allows for leveraging of face detection techniques which are already readily used in different mobile devices.

[0050] FIG. 2a illustrates a representation of two views. The first view, on the left part of the figure, is a representation of one or more audio zones relative to an initial user location. The second view, on the right part of the figure, is a representation of the one or more audio zones relative to a user location after a translational and/or orientational movement. A person 40 may wear an AR, MR and/or VR device (102, 140). The AR, MR and/or VR device (102, 140) may be coupled to a display device 100. The display device 100 may be configured to represent an audio zone, where the audio zone may include audio data that is distributed spatially. For example, the audio zone denoted for illustration purposes as a square with dashed lines around the border of the audio zone. The audio zone may be associated with a visual object, an audio object, and/or both a visual object and the audio object. In an embodiment, the mapping points (o) illustrated in FIG. 1c may be mapped to interest points (x). The mapping points may be pixels when the scene is made up of a visual scene and an audible scene. In an alternative embodiment, the mapping points may be sampling points, that sample a soundfield, when the scene is an audible scene.

[0051] The AR, MR and/or VR device (102, 140) may include one or more processors that include units illustrated in FIG. 4. The device 400 may be coupled to a memory 120. The memory 120 may be configured to store audio data within two or more audio zones associated with one or more interest points, wherein one or more interest points are associated with each zone of the two or more audio zones. For example, as illustrated in FIG. 2a there are four audio zones (20A, 20B, 20C, 20D) shown in each of the left view (initial user location) and the right view (after translational/orientational movement). The interest points are denoted by an “X”. In one embodiment, the interest points may be the same as the sampling points. In another embodiment, the interest points may be the same as mapping points. In yet another embodiment, the interest points are located near where there is sound, or there could be sound. For example, in the audio zone 20A associated with the dog 7A, there is sound 60A within the audio zone 20A. That sound 60A may be represented by audio data within the audio zone 20A. The audio data may be associated with the one interest point within the audio zone 20A. Similarly, the sound 60B within the audio zone 20B associated with the woman 7B may be represented by audio data associated with two interest points. The sound 60C within the audio zone 20C associated with the man 7C speaking with the woman 7B may be represented by audio data associated with three interest points. In general, audio data may be represented by audio data associated with one or more interest points. The number of interest points may be a function of the loudness of the sound and the spatial distribution of the sound.

[0052] The AR, MR and/or VR device (102, 140) may be wearable (not expressly shown in FIG. 2a). There may be a reference point or points on the wearable to one or more of the audio zones. For example, the point between the eyes of a person may be considered a reference point, or if there is a headband or strip that goes over the head of the person, the mid-point of the strip or headband maybe considered a reference point. Other points located as part of the person or part of the wearable device may be considered a reference point. In FIG. 2a, the left view represents a reference point with a star 66. The right view represents the reference point with a different star 67. The one or more processors in the AR, MR and/or VR device may obtain a first distance 62 between an audio zone 20C and a reference point 66. The reference point 66 is relative to the initial location of the person 40. Thus, if a person is wearing the AR, MR and/or VR device, the device position may serve as the reference point. For example, the one or more processors may obtain the first distance 62 between the audio zone 20C and a first device position. After the person makes a translational movement, e.g., the person either moves forward, backward, down, up, or to a side, that person moves from the first device position to the second device position. After the person makes a rotational movement, i.e., the person orients his/her head clockwise, counter-clockwise, or up and down, the device (102, 140) moves from the first device position to the second device position. Such movement (whether translational or rotational), when the first device position moves to the second device position is designated as an updated movement 17. Thus, the one or more processors may obtain an updated first distance 62 after movement of the device (102, 140) has changed from the first device position to the second device position. When there is at least a second audio zone, there may be a distance (not expressly shown) between a first device position (or a reference point on the person at an initial user location). The one or more processors may obtain the distance (a second distance) between the first device position and the second audio zone. After movement of the device (102, 140) has changed from the first device position to the second device position, the one or more processors may obtain an update second distance between the second audio zone and the first device position.

[0053] The orientation/translation sensor unit 404 in the device (102, 140) may represent a combination of a microelectromechanical system (MEMS) for sensing, or any other type of sensor capable of providing information in support of head and/or body tracking. In one example, the orientation/translation sensor unit 404 may represent the MEMS for sensing translational movement similar to those used in cellular phones, such as so-call “smart phones.” More information regarding MEMS for sensing used to perform head tracking can be found in a paper by LaValle, et. al., entitled “Head Tracking for the Oculus Rift,” accessed on Aug. 17, 2017 at a URL of msl.cs.illinois.edu/.about.lavalle/papers/LavYerKatAnt14.pdf. In addition, more information regarding head and body tracking using a camera and various other sensors (for example the visual sensor(s) 130 (could also be used to track head and/or body movements) can be found in a paper by Jesper Tingvall, entitled “Interior Design and Navigation in Virtual Reality,” dated Nov. 1, 2015.

[0054] In an alternative embodiment, the person 40 may be in a vehicle where the display device 100 is integrated into the vehicle. The person’s 40 head movement and/or eye gaze may be tracked with internal cameras mounted within the cabin of the vehicle to determine the head movement or eye gaze. As part of the electronics coupled or integrated with the vehicle there may be one or more processors that may obtain a first distance from the person’s head movement and/or eye gaze at a first position to an audio zone, and then after the head movement and/or eye gaze to a second position obtain the updated first distance. In a similar fashion, a second distance to a second audio zone may be obtained from a person’s head movement and/or eye gaze at a first position, and after the head movement and/or eye gaze to a second position, the one or more processors within the vehicle may obtain an updated second position. Instead of the device’s (102, 140) initial and final position on a wearable device, the first and final position are based on the person’s initial and final head movement and/or eye gaze within the vehicle.

[0055] As such, the AR, MR, and/or VR device (102, 140) may be coupled or integrated into the vehicle. Note, the nomenclature (102, 140) for convenience is used to refer to both the devices illustrated in FIG. 1a and FIG. 1b. The device (102, 140), may further include one or more sensors configured to estimate a distance representative of the movement of the device. The estimated distance may be the first distance to the first audio zone, or the second distance to the second audio zone, or some other distance that enables the one or more processors to determine the first distance to the first audio zone, or the second distance to the second audio zone, and takes into account the movement of the device from the first device position to the second device position. The one or more sensors may be included, alternatively, in the vehicle and aid in determining the head movement of the person or the eye gaze. In an alternative embodiment, the vehicle may be considered to move from one device position to a second device position, where the device position is a vehicle position.

[0056] Moreover, the device (102, 140), or the vehicle, may include a transmitter configured to send the first device position, the second device position, and the difference between the first device position and the second device position, or the first device position, or the second device position, or the difference between the first device position and the second device position.

[0057] In an embodiment, the device (102, 140), or the vehicle, may include a camera configured to capture one or more images, and regions of interest associated with the first audio zone and the second audio zone. If the cameras are included in a vehicle, they may be in-cabin cameras to capture the different audio zones within the vehicle. In an alternate embodiment, the cameras may be external to the vehicle, and may be out-of-the-cabin cameras to capture different audio zones external to the vehicle.

[0058] The AR, VR and/or MR device (102, 140) or the vehicle may also include one or more speakers configured to receive the speaker feeds based on the control of the first audio zone and the second audio zone, render the speakers feeds and play out the audio data within the first audio zone or the second audio zone, or play out the audio data within the first audio zone and the second audio zone.

[0059] The AR, VR and/or MR device (102, 140), or the vehicle may include a display device configured to visualize an audio zone. For example, in FIG. 2a, four audio zones are displayed: audio zones, 20A, 20B, 20C, and 20D. The display device 100 may be configured to visualize one or more video objects that are included within at least one audio zone of the two or more audio zones. For example, the tip of the nose of the dog 7A, the woman 7B, the man 7C speaking with the woman, and the other man 7D may all be considered video objects, and may all be visible, i.e., displayed on the display device 100 of an AR, VR and/or MR device (102, 140). In addition, the display device 100 may be configured to visualize the two or more audio zones (e.g., any one of audio zones 60A, 60B, 60C, and 60D) in the layered soundfield. Moreover, the display device 100 may be configured to visualize two or more interest points of the layered soundfield. For example, the visualized interest points “X” may aid the person 40 in knowing where there is audio energy or audio data which may be manipulated.

[0060] FIG. 2b illustrates a representation of two views. The first view, on the left part of the figure, is a representation of one or more audio zones in a layered soundfield relative to an initial user location. The second view, on the right part of the figure, is a representation of the one or more audio zones in the layered soundfield relative to the user location after a translational and/or orientational movement. In both the first view and the second view, the first audio zone and the second audio zone are located in a layered soundfield. A layered soundfield may signify that there is a higher resolution of audio data between layers. A layered soundfield may also signify a relative radial distance between the person or the user of a device and different audio zones. As an example, there are two soundfields drawn in FIG. 2b though there may be more drawn in an alternative embodiment (different concentric rings representing different layers of a soundfield).

[0061] In FIG. 2b, a first layer or soundfield may be within the concentric circle 80 with dashed lines and may be referred to as a foreground soundfield. In FIG. 2b, the left view includes two audio zones (20B, 20C) within the foreground soundfield, and two audio zones (20A, 20D) that are outside the foreground soundfield. The soundfield outside the foreground soundfield may be designated as a background soundfield. Sound falls off (sounds softer) inversely, for a given amplitude and sound pressure, as a function of distance. Thus, the further the sound is away from the person, the softer it sounds, and it may sound like it is in the background of a scene. It should be noted, however, that there are also different types of sounds. For example, there may be a predominant sound or a diffuse sound. The predominant sound may be directional in nature, i.e., it appears to come from a certain direction. For example, a dog barking or a person speaking are examples of predominant sounds. There may be the sound of a fan, or wind, or a chair sliding across the floor. These sounds when heard by a person 40 may not appear to come from any particular direction, and thus may not be considered predominant sounds. As described herein, the layered soundfield represented in FIG. 2b may include predominant sounds in either the foreground soundfield or the background soundfield. Similarly, there may be diffuse sounds in either the foreground soundfield or the background soundfield. The background soundfield may also include ambient sounds. An ambient sound may be a diffuse sound. In some embodiments, the ambient sound may also be people speaking, however, because of the distance and other sounds in the environment it may not be possible to make out what they are saying, or if there are too many people speaking there is “babble noise”, i.e., a lot of chatter of people.

[0062] As illustrated in FIG. 2b, when the device (102, 140) moves from a first device position to a second device position, an updated movement 17 is obtained by the one or more processors. Thus, the one or more processors may obtain an updated first distance 68 between the first audio zone 20C and the person 40, after movement of the device (102, 140) has changed from the first device position to the second device position. For a background soundfield, there may be a desired “ambient reference distance” that may be used for all of the audio objects or audio zones within the background soundfield. Though it is possible to obtain the distance of each of the audio zones, if they contain predominant sounds, like the sound of the dog 7A barking, or the man 7D speaking, it may be more computationally efficient to treat the distances of each of the audio zones or audio objects as having one ambient reference distance. Perceptually, it may be more desirable to have an ambient reference distance. Thus, though the distance between audio zone 20A including the dog 7A and the distance of the audio zone 20D including the man 7D may be different, in an embodiment these distances may be assigned the value of the same ambient reference distance. It is possible, though, however, that there are different ambient reference distances, one for each audio zone in the background soundfield.

[0063] In other examples, the reference distance is static, or defined as a syntax element of an audio bitstream. When defined using the syntax element, a reference distance may be static (such as sent a single time and therefore static for the duration of the experience) or dynamic (such as sent multiple times during the experience, e.g., per audio frame or per some periodic or non-periodic number of audio frames.

[0064] In the same or alternative embodiment, the audio zone 20A with the dog 7A and/or the audio zone 20D with the man 7D, these audio zones (e.g., either audio zone 20A or audio zone 20D may be a second audio zone in a layered soundfield, where the layered soundfield is a background soundfield) may be controlled.

[0065] One example of control may be loudness compensation for one or more audio zones. Another example of control may be adjusting orientation for one or more audio zones. Yet another example of control may be dynamic range control for one or more audio zones.

[0066] Control of an audio zone may be based on adjusting the loudness compensation, orientation, or dynamic range control of one or more audio zones based on an ambient reference distance. Moreover, the audio data within a first audio zone (e.g. audio zone 20A) may be configured to be adjusted based on the first loudness compensation based on a first ambient reference distance, and the audio data within the second audio zone (e.g. audio zone 20D) may be configured to be adjusted based on the second loudness compensation based on a second ambient reference distance. The ambient reference distances may be the same or different.

[0067] In an embodiment, the first audio zone (e.g., the audio zones 20B with the woman 7B and the audio zone 20C with the man 7C speaking with her) is in a layered soundfield, and the layered soundfield is a foreground soundfield. In an embodiment, the one or more processors within the device (102, 140) or the vehicle may perform loudness compensation based on the foreground soundfield, where each distance from an audio zone (20B, 20C) to a person 40 may be considered its own foreground reference distance. In an alternate embodiment, the foreground reference distance may be the same for each audio zone in the foreground soundfield.

[0068] In an embodiment, the device (102, 140) the first audio zone may be configured to transition from the first layer of the layered soundfield to the second layer of the layered soundfield. A transition from one layered soundfield to another layered soundfield of an audio zone, may be, for example, the audio zone 20D transitioning from the background soundfield to the foreground soundfield 80, as shown in the right view of FIG. 2b. The sound from the man 7D may change from an ambient sound (possibly not as discernable when the sound is in the background soundfield) to a predominant sound (the sound, e.g., the speech, is more pronounced in the foreground soundfield). Another example is the transition of the audio zone 20B with the woman 7B that was in the foreground soundfield 80, but after the updated movement 17 is in the background soundfield.

[0069] In an embodiment, a second audio zone (e.g. audio zone 20D) may transition from the second layer (e.g. the background soundfield) of the layered soundfield to the first layer (the foreground sounfield) of the layered soundfield, and the audio data within the first audio zone (e.g. audio zone 20B) may be adjusted based on the first loudness compensation based on the foreground distance, and the audio data within the second audio zone is configured to be adjusted comprising the second loudness compensation based on a second foreground distance. That is to say, even though the second audio zone was in a background soundfield, after the updated movement 17, the second audio zone has transitioned to the foreground soundfield. Both the audio zones (the first and the second audio zones) may be updated based on a foreground distance. The foreground distances are different. However, there may be instances where it is desireable to use only one of the foreground distances for all audio zones in the foreground soundfield 80.

[0070] It should be noted that the display of the AR, MR and/or VR device (102, 140) may depict a two-dimensional visual scene or three-dimensional visual scene. Different geodesic dashed lines are used to highlight that the visual scene and/or audible scene may be three-dimensional. In some figures, the geodesic lines are not illustrated for clarity; however, a person having ordinary skill in the art would understand that either three-dimensional visual scenes or three-dimensional audible scenes are part of an AR, MR and/or VR device (102, 140).

[0071] The AR, VR and/or MR device (102, 140), or the vehicle may include a display device configured to visualize one or more video objects that are included within at least one audio zone of the two or more audio zones. For example, audio zones 20A, 20B, 20C, and 20D each include a video object: the face of a dog 7A, a woman 7B, a man speaking with the woman 7C and another man 7D.

[0072] The person 40 may see the audio zones displayed on the display device and may give an interaction command to manipulate or control the audio data within a selected audio zone. For example, the person 40 may touch the audio zone, point to the audio zone, give a command “audio zone 1 (the audio zones may be labeled)”, or may use a controller to touch or click on the audio zone. In addition, in some embodiments, the person 40 may use a gesture to grab or touch the audio zone.

[0073] The interaction command may be an input modality. For example, a hand, finger or gesture tracker (e.g., leap motion sensor) may point to a scene element (i.e., an interest point, or an audio zone, or video object). The finger, hand or gesture may be used to tap, swipe, or grab one of the scene elements. Moreover, an interaction command may also be in the form of an eye gaze or head gesture. For example, if the person 40 is looking at a particular scene element for some period of time, the eye gaze may be used to interact with the scene element and select it. A nod, shake, or head movement maybe used for head gesture to also interact with a scene element.

[0074] In addition, the interaction command may be a voice command. For example, an object may be recognized within the AR, MR, and/or VR device (102, 140). Once a keyword or object name is associated with the video object or audio object, the voice command may be used to manipulate the video or audio object, e.g.’s make the object louder, silence the object. In another embodiment, the interaction command may be a pointing controller, e.g. a mouse pointer, which may hover over the desired scene element, e.g. a video or audio object.

[0075] The one or more processors may receive an interaction command to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, in the layered soundfield and generate one or more indicators that the interaction command was received to control the audio data, in the first audio zone or the second audio zone, in the layered soundfield.

[0076] The generation of one or more indicators may be received by the one or more processors, and the one or more processors may control the audio data in the first audio zone, the second audio zone, or both the first audio zone and the second audio zone in the layered soundfield.

[0077] In addition, the display device may be configured to visualize two or more interest points of the layered soundfield. For example, in each of the zones there is an “ex” X which represents the visualization of one or more interest points. The interest points may be manipulated or controlled by similar interface input modalities as for the audio zones, e.g., touching, pointing, eye gaze, nodding, or clicking on the one or more interest points.

[0078] Moreover, the display device may be configured to visualize the layered soundfield. The foreground soundfield 80 is depicted by a circle, though other shapes may be possible to represent the soundfield. For example, the foreground soundfield may be represented by a sphere, a cube, a square, rectangle, or other closed surface to demarcate a spatial boundary between sounds which are proximal to the person 40. Proximity may be relative to a bounded space where the distance of a sound source is relatively close to a sound detector, in order for the sound detector to detect the level of the sound emitted by the sound source. For example, a sound made by a person or electronic device that is made 500 meters away from a sound detector typically is not heard unless it is extremely loud (e.g. the sound of a jet or a very loud concert). But if the sound is very loud, 20 meters away may be proximal. While the sound of footsteps may be more proximal at only 1 meter, and at 20 meters may be considered to be too far to be in a foreground soundfield.

[0079] In an alternative embodiment, an interaction command may also be part of a device that is part of a mobile device, e.g. a smartphone, where the person 40 may hold or use an accessory to transform the smartphone into a wearable device, and the display device 100 is integrated into the mobile device.

[0080] In an alternative embodiment, an interaction command may also be part of a device that is in a vehicle, where the person 40 may be in a vehicle, and where the display device 100 is integrated into the vehicle.

[0081] Visualization of the foreground soundfield may follow the movement of the person 40. Thus, in the right view of FIG. 2b, the foreground soundfield shifts with the person 40. In this example, the audio zones are static. As such, the audio zone 20B falls out of the foreground soundfield, and the audio zone 20D enters the foreground soundfield, with the movement of the device. This mode supports an interaction mode where the person 40 is able to hear (and visualize) audio zones that are proximal within the foreground soundfield. In this interaction mode, the effect is more similar to a real world immersive experience, where people or sound sources sound closer when you approach them.

[0082] For clarity, only one view is represented in FIG. 2c, FIG. 2d, and FIG. 2e. Though the features described with reference to those figures may be applicable while the device moves from one position to another. In addition, for simplicity, the audio zones are also not illustrated in FIG. 2c.

[0083] In FIG. 2c, the area around the interest points have diagonal hash marks within a circle around people 60C and 60D. This is done to illustrate that the person 40 may give an interaction command to mute or block the audio in that area. If there is other audio data within the audio zone (e.g. audio zone 20C and audio zone 20D), the audio data (all of the audio data or partial portion of the audio data) within the audio zone may be blocked. In addition, in an embodiment, the video object within the audio zone may also be blocked or deleted. For example, the man 7C talking with woman 7B is partially visually blocked. However, the man 7C may also be fully visually blocked in another implementation. Similarly, the man 7D may also be partially or fully visually blocked depending on the implementation. Blocking (i.e., deletion or suppression of audio and/or video objects may be desirable in a video camera type application where the person 40 may want to either suppress or eliminate the audio and video objects from the resulting recording. Another application may be used to eliminate an interference signal (e.g., unwanted audio sources) for audio user interfaces, or for example, for a personal digital assistant or some future modified version of a device like an Amazon spot (a device that currently has both audio interface and camera capture capabilities).

[0084] In FIG. 2d and FIG. 2e, the one or more processors may be configured to control the first audio zone (e.g., 20B or 20D) which may include the amplification of the audio data within the first audio zone. In FIG. 2d, the illustration of the amplification and/or attenuation of audio data within an audio zone is in the foreground sounfield 80. In FIG. 2e, the illustration of the amplification and/or attenuation of audio data within an audio zone is in the background soundfield. These two figures illustrate that the amplification and/or attenuation of audio data (and/or video object(s)) within an audio zone is possible in either a foreground soundfield or a background soundfield. Moreover, a person having ordinary skill will readily recognize that amplification and/or attenuation of audio data and/or video objects may be preformed in a layered soundfield. That is to say, in the foreground soundfield 80 audio data (and/or video object(s)) may be amplified, and in the background soundfield audio data (and/or video object(s)) may be attenuated. Conversely, the reverse is also possible. Namely, the foreground soundfield 80 audio data (and/or video object(s)) may be attenuated, and in the background soundfield audio data (and/or video object(s)) may be amplified.

[0085] Additional features and capabilities are described below. The display device 100 may be configured to visualize a representation of the amplification of the audio data within the first audio zone. The visual representation of the amplification of the audio data within the first audio zone may be illustrated by the increased size of the first audio zone. Thus, as the size of the first audio zone is increased the audio data within the first audio zone may be amplified.

发表评论

电子邮件地址不会被公开。 必填项已用*标注