Tag: augmented reality glasses

Augmented reality glasses from Sony, SmartEyeglass, hit the shelves

These wearable devices have now become available in ten countries for an official price of $840.

The SmartEyeglass from Sony, that brand’s augmented reality glasses, have now officially received their rollout for consumers to purchase them in any of ten different initial countries.

The smart glasses were first unveiled last year, but they hit the store shelves at the end of March.

At the moment, what is available is the Sony SmartEyeglass Developer Edition (SED-E1). Those augmented reality glasses also include an additional controller and come with a price tag of $840. That said, if the nerdy appearance of Google Glass was a put off too much of the market, then they may not be impressed with the far less sophisticated looking wearable technology that Sony has now released.

These augmented reality glasses have been designed to provide the wearer with a pure AR experience.

They use hologram optics tech in order to be able to superimpose images, symbols, and text overtop of the natural field of view of the wearer. This idea is not unlike Google Glass, in that sense, as Sony’s version is able to place an overlay of digital information over top of the real environment of the wearer. For instance, it could add directions and arrows on top of the actual street view being seen by the person wearing the device.

At the moment, these AR glasses are available only in the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Sweden, Italy, Germany, and Belgium. Consumers in the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan and Germany are able to buy these wearables, no matter who they are. However, in the other countries in which the devices are being sold, there are certain limitations, such as the fact that only business customers will be allowed to buy them, at least for the first wave of the rollout.

At the time that this article was written, Sony had not yet announced how it intended to move forward with the rollout of these augmented reality glasses beyond the initial ten countries. It is unclear whether there will be a global release or whether the device will ever become available to all consumers.

Augmented reality glasses patent awarded to Apple

The technology involved appears to be wearables that will connect to and interact with the iPhone.

Apple Inc. has now been awarded a patent for a type of augmented reality glasses that would function based on a wireless connection with the iPhone and would possibly offer the wearer a three dimensional AR functionality not entirely unlike that of the halted Google Glass product.

The original filing for this AR technology device patent occurred back in September 2008.

The patent involves a mountable device that could be created in the form of wearable technology such as goggles or hats or that could be attached to hats or helmets. The patent doesn’t specifically discuss virtual or augmented reality, but it does show a device that has the potential of offering a split screen capability in order to display several different image frames in order to provide three dimension-like image depth through stereoscopic imaging.

The patent also shows possible augmented reality glasses that could adjust media display beyond the glasses lenses.

Augmented Reality -  iPhoneThis would display the images at a distance of about 4 meters (about 13 feet), instead of 20 millimeters (about ¾ inch). That is the concept behind AR technology and it has, therefore, been assumed in many reports that this tech will be the focus of those wearables.

That said, Apple could choose to create integration of further advanced VR or AR functions into a device if it chose to do so, and could opt not to progress with the development. That said, as is always the case with Apple, it declined the opportunity to comment on any of its products that are still in development and that have not yet been officially unveiled.

This technology comes at a time in which Google has recently announced that its own two year old Explorer Program for its Google Glass augmented reality glasses has been shut down. Moreover, that company has hired a former exec from Apple, Tony Fadell, at the head of the company’s redevelopment efforts. It has stated that it will continue to sell the device to enterprise customers, but it is very clear that the company has taken a step backward from the route that it had been taking with that wearable technology.