Sony Announces Clip-On Smart Glasses


Looking to hop ahead of the oncoming CES 2015 storm of product announcements, Sony has announced a concept module that acts as a clip-on to turn traditional glasses into smart devices. Sony has confirmed that they will be officially unveiling the device at CES in January. The concept module has been dubbed the Sony “SmartEyeglass Attach!” and initially envisions the glasses to be used for sports-specific purposes such as golf, running, or cycling.

 

As shown above the module (on the left side of the image) sits on the frames, while a battery unit sits on the right side of the image. Source: Sony.

As shown above the module (on the left side of the image) sits on the frames, while a battery unit sits on the right side of the image.
Source: Sony.

 

The module, which is listed at roughly 40 grams in weight, aims to be lightweight and display visual information .23 inch high-res color color OLED microdisplay. The device is shown sitting on the right eye, identical to Google Glass, but no mention has been made as to the interchangeability of the device from right eye to left eye.

 

Shown above is the display in various sports modes, the first major application Sony envisions for the device. Source: Sony.

Shown above is the display in various sports modes, the first major application Sony envisions for the device.
Source: Sony.

 

The OLED microdisplay boasts an impressive 640 x 400 pixel resolution. The innovative pixel configuration along with the newly developed panel allows for improved vision in outdoor settings. Sony sees the device increasing peoples’ everyday lives:

“By simply attaching it to a pair of fashionable glasses, goggles, sunglasses, or other type of eyewear, you can instantly gain access to visual information that adds a level of convenience to your everyday life…[the device] presents the opportunity to begin incorporating glasses-style smart devices into your life in a comfortable, easy way.”

But Sony does make sure to clarify that they envision the device having the most use in sport and enterprise applications. Given the traction that smart glasses have seen in the enterprise versus everyday use, Sony is smart to qualify their optimism for “everyday use.” Sony does hope to see increased traction in the non-enterprise markets by allowing users to easily take on or take off the module, likely a better offering for social situations; but they have yet to clarify a price and how portable the device is – not to mention safety concerns.

 

Sony has plans to “start mass production of this display module within the coming year,” though did not specify anything past that. Sony will first make the device available to eyewear makers whose products are use-case specific such as for sports or fitness, electronics manufacturers interested in pairing their devices with wearables, and companies who provide wearable solutions to businesses. They are preparing an SDK for the device, and give potential uses such as accessing data stored in the cloud, or that link infrastructure systems. They also see wide-uses of pairing the device with a smartphone to provide hands-free experiences to athletes of many kinds, such as the Golf use below:

 

Source: Sony.

Source: Sony.

 

The SmartEyeglass Attach! will be added to the Wearables.com Database so that you can keep up with product updates as this develops.

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