Coming Soon: Smart Glasses that Look Like Regular GlassesPosted: January 14, 2014
Mike Orcutt writes: For all the hype around smart glasses, none of them actually look like normal glasses. But Vuzix, which develops wearable display technology for military and industrial applications, plans to change that this summer by releasing a pair of sleek wraparound shades that will let users see colorful images projected over objects in the real world.
Sunglasses made with nanoscale optical technology hint at a near future of inconspicuous head-mounted displays.
Vuzix CEO Paul Travers says his company’s sunglasses will not only be less bulky and obtrusive than Google Glass, they’ll also provide an augmented reality experience that actually resembles the one portrayed in Google’s first promotional video for Glass, in which useful bits of information like navigational cues are displayed in the middle of the wearer’s field of vision. This isn’t possible today with Glass, whose display sits off to the side, above the right eye, and is the visual equivalent of a 25-inch high-definition television seen from eight feet away.
Everyone trying to make glasses with computers in them faces similar problems, Travers says: “Look and feel is one of them. Another is user interface.” Vuzix’s technology is meant to address both challenges by taking advantage of relatively recent advances in the ability to control the movement of light at the nanoscale.
WHY IT MATTERS: Head-mounted displays could transform computing applications such as navigation, translation, gaming, and assisting people with disabilities.
With conventional optics, projecting images into the middle of someone’s field of vision would call for a much thicker lens than the one in Glass, says Travers. But the lenses in Vuzix’s spectacles will be less than two millimeters thick. That’s possible because the company employs a “waveguide” technology that acts like a fiber optic cable, directing light from tiny displays housed in the temples of the glasses toward the lenses. There the light gets scattered by nanoscale structures in the lenses called gratings; variations in how the light is sent to the gratings can be used to produce colorful high-resolution images…
- Vuzix develops Google Glass-like smart glasses – but with superior optics and standard eyeframes (venturebeat.com)
- Vuzix V720 Gadget Review (trustedreviews.com)
- Vuzix, Nokia creates competition for Google Glass with sleeker smart glasses (medcitynews.com)
- Vuzix and Nuance bring voice recognition to M100 Smart Glasses (gizmag.com)
- Nuance Voice Recognition Added To Vuzix M100 Smart Glasses (geeky-gadgets.com)
- VUZIX Announces 2014 CES Innovations Award (cedailynews.com)
- Vuzix M2000AR First Smartglasses To Use Waveguide Optical Technology (ubergizmo.com)
- CES Trade Fair Showcases Internet Eyewear (medindia.net)
- VUZIX Announces 2014 CES Innovations Award (virtual-strategy.com)