Apple may plan a sophisticated video-playing headset, potentially as a 'Made In Cupertino' accessory for iPods and iPhones.

A recently published pair of Apple patent posits the solution, a head-mounted display using lasers to render the images, which are displayed right before a user's eyes.

What makes it interesting is that the laser engine would be separate from the eyeglasses, meaning these should be smaller and lighter than similar solutions already available on the market.

The second patent is for technology to extend these laser images in order to create a more realistic viewing experience. The patents were submitted in 2006, but, as with all Apple patents, their existence doesn't mean we're looking at a product that's going to ship.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs recently told Fortune his company is as proud of the products it hasn't shipped as of those it has bought to market. The patents do, for example, note that the MEM lasers described for the headsets currently face "some concerns about safety and power consumption".