Since the start of the virtual reality movement, the overwhelming large headsets have taken over the majority of the buzz regarding the entire field. Unfortunately, these headsets just aren’t practical for daily use. The use of augmented reality for consistent use in a public setting is a much more realistic idea for the times we live in now. There are multiple eyewear companies out right now making the effort to convert their product into the next reality altering breakthrough. There are corporate giants to make their splash in the field along with multiple Kickstarters, but it’s up to you decide which one will be the next big thing.
Microsoft took on the AR route this go around, and their HoloLens eyewear glasses are exactly what you think of when imagining the future. Using a window’s ten operating system, Microsoft’s HoloLens allows you to take advantage of software in a physical manner opposed to clicking on it with your mouse. It is able to support holographic computing with APIs that enable multiple different features that give your environment around you the understanding of what your actual movements are. The lightweight design that doesn’t look like you’re wearing a bike helmet with a pair of aviators attached to it, is free of any wires or dangling cords. HoloLens may be the next big thing for designers, architects, and engineers but you’ll be paying a steep price for it. It’s set to hit the market at $3,000 in the first quarter of this year.
Epson Moverio BT-2000
It’s not going to win any awards for fashion, but it will for performance. Another big dog joins the AR world, with Epson’s Moverio BT-2000. Moverio displays two screens that give each of your eyes a 960×540 pixel image, and provide you the ability to interact with the images presented through a cable attached to a motion a control remote. They are highlighting the fact that the headset comes with a flip-up feature that moves the display with you while the headset is still on along with their own application platform. This will allow you to get highly customized applications that only come from the Epson marketplace. Each of these advantages come at a price $2,999.99 and have yet to hit the market yet.
A little more affordable, a little more stylish, and a little bit newer. Icis is the first set of augmented reality glasses that truly give you the feel of normal eyewear. Don’t let its sleek fool you though, Icis can still perform with the best of the augmented reality systems out there. Corey Mack, CEO of Icis, noted that the information in the glasses comes from the cloud, which is then displayed on your display around the outside field of vision. This allows you to evaluate images to the custom fit of the room you are in without having to awkwardly look up or flash a shining light in people’s faces. Icis is easily connected to any one of the Android, iOS, or windows platforms using Bluetooth and are making an application to allow you to access your favorite apps as Icis widgets. This is all priced at the affordable value of $220.
Augmented Reality is the looking through the glass type of reality that has been displayed in movies and blogs for years. The ability to toss on a pair of glasses and see your agenda, information on a passing building, or retrieve directions with a voice command is something that could be a massive convenience in the world we live in. Each of the highlighted products above have the capabilities of doing that now, and the possibility of becoming even more advanced in the years to come.