AR Eyewear

AR Eyewear

AR eyewear is a technology that overlays digital information on top of your vision, usually with an app installed on your smartphone or other handheld device.

There are plenty of glasses on the market now, but there are still some technical limitations that could prevent mainstream adoption. One such limitation is the need for a large facial/cephalic device to house all the processing power, battery and connectivity.

1. Vuzix Blade

Vuzix is one of the leading providers of augmented reality (AR) technologies, products and services. It offers a range of smart glasses and video eyewear solutions that deliver AR, voice control, video conferencing and other applications.

The Vuzix Blade is a pair of AR smart glasses that connect frontline workers to critical AR systems, providing hands-free, heads-up access to information and remote expertise. It’s designed for use in the enterprise, with a lightweight form factor and ANSI Z87.1 safety certification.

In addition to a built-in full-color waveguide display, the glasses are powered by an ARM processor and have an 8-megapixel camera that lets users capture images and videos. They also include haptic motors, motion sensors and noise-cancelling microphones for voice control.

Like other Vuzix smart glasses, the Blade uses an Android operating system to power a variety of apps and games that you can play through its companion app. You can also download apps from third-party developers and configure the device through an app on your phone.

With Vuzix’s latest version, the Blade 2, you can expect better security and easier integration with MDMs. It runs on the latest version of Android, and is built with a powerful chip set that’s ideal for enterprise-focused applications.

The company also claims it has more than 400 AR-focused developers on board, which is encouraging. It’s already working with a number of major companies on the software side, including Yelp and Strava.

While the Blade isn’t quite ready for prime time yet, it’s still an impressive pair of smart glasses that’s far ahead of the competition. At $1,000, it’s not as cheap as Google Glass and the Magic ar eyewear Leap One, but it’s a lot less expensive than most consumer-grade AR glasses.

The Blade’s interface is straightforward. You tap and swipe to navigate, but there are also a few other options, including two-finger gestures for rewind and fast forward. You can also control volume with these same gestures. The only downside is that there’s not a huge selection of apps available right now, but Vuzix says it has plans to get more in the future.

2. North Focals

North’s Focals are a pair of smart glasses that combine augmented reality with the classic look of eyewear. They run on a Qualcomm APQ8009w system-on-a-chip (SoC) with four Arm Cortex A7 CPU cores, a Qualcomm Adreno 304 GPU and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity.

The first generation of Focals, which debuted last year, cost an astronomical $1000, but North has now brought the price down to $599, making them much more accessible. You can get them in a wide range of frames and lenses, from standard non-prescription options to round frame and premium lens versions that cost an extra $100 each.

You’ll also have to pay for a ring-like accessory called the Loop, which you wear on your index finger and which lets you control the Focals’ interface. It looks a little nerdy but it’s actually a very useful and subtle way of controlling the interface, as it’s not visible to anyone but you, and your hands don’t have to leave your pocket.

As well as letting you view your calendar, weather, and social media feeds, Focals can be used to answer questions, take notes, and control your music playlist. The app can also provide a voice assistant (Alexa or Google Assistant), which is handy when you don’t want to touch your glasses but would rather talk to someone in the background than open up a chat app.

In addition, you can use the app to check your battery levels and scroll through notifications. The Focals’ battery life is displayed in percentages and they have an IP55 rating, which means they’re water-resistant.

But you’ll need to keep your glasses in a protective charging case when you don’t have them on, as the batteries can be damaged if you drop them or let them get wet. It’s also worth pointing out that they can be pretty heavy, particularly when you have prescription lenses in, so you might want to get some help from an optician before deciding whether or not to buy them.

As far as the user experience goes, Focals is a lot more streamlined than Google Glass. There’s a customised fit process that ensures the glasses sit right on your head, avoiding any slippage that can knock the display out of alignment. The Focals also feature an app that allows you to adjust the ear and nose rests for a custom fit, so they don’t interfere with your vision while you’re wearing them.

3. Nreal Light

Nreal, the augmented reality startup that first showed off its Light glasses at CES in January, has now shifted its focus to bringing its vision to the consumer market. The Chinese company’s $499 Air AR glasses are a tad lighter and more compact than their previous version, but they still have a number of significant features that set them apart from the competition.

One of the key features that makes the Nreal Light glasses stand out is their camera-less design. Unlike the Hololens or Magic Leap, Nreal’s camera-less glasses do not track your movements, and are completely safe to wear around others.

You can connect the Nreal Light to your phone, computer or gaming console using a single USB-C cable. You’ll also need ar eyewear to download the Nebula app, which works to serve the content that is projected through the glasses.

Once connected to your device, the Nreal Light becomes a 3D controller through the Nebula app that you can use to navigate the virtual content. This is a great improvement over the original circular controller that Nreal used, as it allows you to use a more natural way to interact with the virtual content.

The Nreal Light glasses are lightweight, which is a good thing since you’re likely to be wearing them for long periods of time. They’re very comfortable to wear, and the company even includes 3 nose pads in the box so that you can choose which one is most suited for your face.

They’re also available in multiple sizes and color options, including black and white. While they’re not perfect, they’re a good starting point for anyone looking to explore augmented reality.

Moreover, they come with a number of certifications, including TUV Rheinland Group’s Low Blue Light (Hardware Solution), Flicker Free and Eye Comfort. These certifications are important because they ensure that your eyes don’t suffer from the effects of prolonged exposure to LED screens, which can cause a range of issues from blurred vision to headaches.

In addition to the aforementioned features, the Nreal Light glasses also come with a number of other perks that aren’t common among glasses at this price point. For starters, the glasses are compatible with both the Steam Deck and the Nintendo Switch, allowing you to play games without draining the battery on your main screen. The glasses also support wireless charging, so you can charge your phone or gaming device while you’re on the go.

4. Tooz

Smart glasses, AR, mixed reality and VR will become part of everyday life, for commercial applications but also especially for private use.

The tooz by ar eyewear, a joint venture between Telekom and Zeiss, is the first of its kind to provide a high-resolution HD image that fills the wearers field of view. The glasses are lightweight and comfortable to wear, with an impressive battery life and a small display that beams information into the right lens of your eyewear.

To achieve this feat, tooz used its patented curved waveguide and incoupling surface technologies along with an innovative prescription layer that fits neatly within a monocular optical system without any further optics attachments or additional lenses required. As the holder of the patent for this technology, tooz will be able to equip future optical systems produced by other manufacturers to bring augmented reality to consumers worldwide.

Tooz is the first of its kind to provide augmented reality with an integrated prescription and in so doing has made it possible for people with myopia or hyperopia to experience the wonders of AR. The most impressive part is that the augmented reality glasses have a price tag that won’t break the bank.

The company’s most noteworthy product is its ESSNZ Berlin, a pair of glasses that boasts the aforementioned AR technology, a curved waveguide, and an integrated AI headset. The ESSNZ is the latest in tooz’s quest to build the next generation of smart glasses that are comfortable, lightweight and stylish. For more details and to get your hands on a pair, visit their website. The ESSNZ will be available for pre-order beginning April 15th. It is expected to retail for around $300.