Sony’s Google Glass rival specs to arrive in March
With wearables in the smartwatch sector booming in the recent months, Sony, unlike most OEMs, has got something else keeping it busy. The company has invested in a Google Glass alternative called SmartEyeglass, which was first shown off at CES 2014. It today promised to make the hardware available by the end of March 2015.
Sony has launched the SDK “Developer Preview” for the transparent binocular SmartWear prototype, which houses an array of sensors including an accelerometer, gyroscope, ambient light sensor and an electronic compass. The device will also come equipped with a 3MP camera, and a wire connected external battery pack which is integrated with a touch sensor, microphone and speaker.
The unique element of Sony’s SmartEyeglass is within its display, and also the key difference between Sony’s and Google’s smartwear. Sony uses a green monochrome display to overlay information, where hologram optics are used to superimpose the information directly into the line of sight of the viewer, instead of the usual smartglass implementation of mirrors or projectors. The outcome is thus closer to an augmented reality experience with a more immediate effect.
“This is about going beyond hardware” said Hiroshi Mukawa, Head of the SmartEyeglass Project, Sony Corporation. “Our thinking is to match external creativity with in-house innovation to truly stretch the capability of the products we create – releasing the SDK early means that both our industry’s most established and up-and-coming developers will help shape what SmartEyeglass is capable of.”
The device will be able to sync with compatible Andorid handsets in order to provide its user with notifications and information such as navigation directions. Sony is keen on recruiting devs, especially those in the augmented reality area, to build apps for the platform to create a varied and solid ecosystem to support the product at launch.
It is great to see other tech companies giving Google a bit of pressure in bringing out serious Glass competitors, and although we are not so into the SmartEyeglass’ overall appearance, in some respect, Sony has done a good job in bettering features of Google Glass. Those who will like to find out more detailed specs can head over to the company’s Developer World where more information can be found regarding the SDK.