Smart glasses take the form of traditional eyeglasses, but are embedded with technology that the wearer can see and control with eye movements, voice commands, and user controls. Currently, there are nearly a dozen smart glasses on the market or in development, most of which are able to process data much like a smartphone does. They feature augmented reality overlays, cameras, GPS capabilities, microphones, motion tracking, and more, and retail between $600 and $1,500.
In 2015, the Office of the Inspector General published a report suggesting the U.S. Postal Service would benefit from the use of augmented reality glasses, which would overlay data on top of real-world images. The inspector made the case that AR glasses could be employed to load, unload, and deliver mail more efficiently.
The first smart glasses to gain widespread notoriety were Google Glass. Though the product was not widely adopted, Google Glass did help introduce the mass market to the concept of the wearable technology. However, niche products have seen decent success. Recon Instruments produces smart eyewear products like Recon Jet, developed for extreme and professional athletes. SENTH IN1 crowdfunded capital for what they call the best cycling glasses available, which can be operated from a weatherproof Bluetooth thumb controller. Meta Glasses, Epson Moverio and Hud Glasses are also popular devices. Currently, there are smart glasses that operate on Windows, iOS, and Android.
While smart glasses struggle to take off for mainstream consumers, the opportunities for the application of the technology in the healthcare industry reach far and wide. In the second half of 2015, Google revealed that Google Glass would be reworked and redesigned for use in enterprise and medical settings.
It’s a fascinating space within wearable technology that is bound to see a huge amount of changes and innovations in a small amount of time. To find what could be right for you, visit our critic reviews, community reviews, and device database where you can directly compare products.