This week the folks at Layar have spoken up on their newest update to the system they called Layar Creator. With this tool, users are able to create images that, when tapped in on with a device (like a mobile phone, for example), will become interactive. This is done with augmented reality.
Epson can forgive you if your first thought when you hear augmented reality is Google Glass, even though you're wrong. Google may never had actually described its wearable as an AR device, but a combination of the over-promising original concept video and a general naivety about the segment overall led many would-be Glass wearers to be surprised at what the headset really is: a convenient notifications pane in the corner of your vision. If you're looking for true AR, though, Epson might have the answer. We caught up with the company to check out its latest headset, the Moverio BT-200, and find out why it's confident it can become the de-facto choice for augmented reality.
Vuzix will take on Google Glass with a wearable headset resembling "designer sunglasses" rather than the somewhat clunky Borg-style tech companies are offering today, thanks to a newly announced deal with a mysterious "Tier 1" brand. The project, which Vuzix says will distill its waveguide-based eyepiece technology - expected to launch this year in industrial form - into a more consumer-friendly form, is expected to reach final design stage sometime in 2015, with a commercial launch beyond that.
Lumus has brought its DK-40 wearable to CES 2014, showing off the new developer unit in public for the first time. The monocular headset is, like Google's Glass, an Android-powered wearable computer, but whereas Glass floats a small window for notifications and such in the upper corner of your eye, the DK-40 actually overlays a full VGA digital image over the right eye instead. We grabbed some hands-on time to see whether it lived up to our expectations from the original prototype we tried all the way back in early 2012.
Wearables startup Meta has revealed its latest headset, the MetaPro, a consumer version of its Meta 1 developer device that amps up Google Glass by overlaying full digital graphics over the real world. Expected to ship in June 2014, for the not-inconsiderable price of $3,000, the MetaPro glasses look far less geeky than their dev-focused predecessors but still manage to fit two 720p HD lenses with 40-degree field of vision. That, Meta says, is 15x the screen area that Glass delivers.
Vuzix has launched a new rival to Google's Glass, the Vuzix M2000AR HMD, using new Waveguide optics built in partnership with Nokia. Targeted at industrial users, though likely to spawn a consumer version soon, the M2000AR has a 720p display integrated into its monocular lens along with a 1080p camera, integrated head tracking, and a choice of bright monochrome or slightly more subdued full-color screens. According to Vuzix, the hologram-based system it uses is lighter, less bulky, and produces better graphics than the optics regularly used in headsets like Glass.
Today the first DLC for the augmented reality game The Playroom built-in to the PlayStation 4 has appeared with the name Toy Maker. This update to The Playroom allows the user to take their smartphone or tablet and create their own toys to toss into their virtual world. With the PlayStation 4 camera, the user's environment becomes a place to create and play with not only miniature virtual robots, but a variety of odd objects as well.
ORA, a wearable computer similar to Google Glass, was showcased today at GMIC San Francisco, the largest mobile tech conference in Silicon Valley. Optinvent, the manufacturer behind the wearable, is billing the headwear as "the only true AR smart glass" on the market. ORA doesn't shy from looking clunky, embracing its necessary bulk with bold styling.
Motorcycle helmets are definitely going high-tech in an effort to improve safety and offer riders more connectivity when cruising down the highway. A company called Skully Helmets has unveiled the latest high-tech helmet called the Skully P1 and it's very impressive. One of the key features of the helmet is an integrated rearview camera.
There's a team of creators out in the wild this week showing off a pair of augmented reality / virtual reality glasses called castAR, a pair of glasses that's set to make Star Wars a reality. The inspiration for this wearable piece of technology comes directly from the first Star Wars movie, A New Hope, in a scene where the droids are playing a 3D chess game with Chewbacca. In this scene, the pieces for the chess game, (called a Djarik hologame, for you hardcore nerds), are standing projected above the board in 3D - this inspiration pushed the creators of castAR to make a pair of glasses that uses a mix of augmented reality and projection to make a whole new environment for the user.