Wearable HUDs arrive in Europe
Looking to perfect your Adam Jensen look in time for the office Christmas party? Vuzix' new AR eyewear might be just the aug you're looking for: a pair of glasses designed to withstand high velocity projectile impact with their own tiny heads up display.
Vuzix has been making virtual reality eyewear for a long time now, but the problem with most of its glasses is that they entirely block you off from the world around you. Their tiny LCD screens can replicate the look of a cinema display, but it's still a computer desktop you're looking at rather than the analogue clarity of the real world.
It's latest virtual world goggles look altogether more interesting. They're called the Tay-Eye LT.
The Tac-Eye LT is, as far as I'm aware, one of the first 'real' augmented reality systems, which overlays information on to what you see, rather than a camera image of what's in front of you.
The glasses have actually been in use in the US, mostly for military applications, since May, but according to the company they're now more generally available across Europe. General in the sense that you have to contact Vuzix to arrange pricing per order, that is.
They look very much like the description of a project Vuzix was developing on behalf of the US Army's Natick Soldier Systems Center in Massachusetts and is apparently part of the Future Force Warrior program, but now designed to work with an iPhone.
I for one hope some gadget distributor picks them up. Not only will they look good at parties, they could be an ace gaming peripheral. Removing the HUD from the monitor would be particularly interesting with a three screen set-up.
The real future of wearable computing, though, is more likely to be in another project Vuzix recently announced, which uses technology from Nokia to overlay video directly onto the lenses of see-through sunglasses. It's a way off being commercially available, but hopefully there'll be more news next year.