Google has made Glass available to anyone that wants to part with $1500, but they are not the only company making smart glasses. Epson has just announced that they are releasing the next version of the their own smart glasses device, the Moverio BT-200. You probably know Epson as one of the world's largest printer manufacturers. The company has been working on their own version of smart glasses for a while. The BT-200 is finally available for consumers to purchase, or they will be soon.
The Moverio BT-200, in addition to having a mouthful of a name, includes a camera, stereoscopic display, and head motion tracking sensors. The device features dual transparent lenses have small, LCD projectors. These projectors provide the equivalent of a 960 x 540 qHD resolution display. The Moverio BT-200 offers stereoscopic displays projecting transparent items over real-life objects in a 16:9 aspect ratio and 23-degree field of view. The motion tracking sensors will make navigation and gaming completely hands-free. They actually come with a hand-held controller that you can use to control them as well. The BT-200 glasses come with Bluetooth 3.0 and Wi-Fi connectivity as well as Dolby support for MP4 and H.264 ACC files. Playback is all native. The glasses are running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and a camera built-in to the frames. There's even a small LED that acts as a signal that you are recording to anyone watching you. No sneaky stuff, eh?
The design is arguably more awkward and geeky than Google Glass, so don't expect to blend in to the crowd while wearing these bad boys. Epson is excited about the product though. Atsunari Tsuda, Epson's General Manager of Visual Products, put it this way: "The Epson Moverio BT-200 smart glasses offer consumers crystal clear video as well as access to incredible new augmented reality experiences and relevant information according to their personal interests and needs. Leveraging Epson's leadership in LCD projection technology and visual imaging, the Moverio BT-200's transparent display and powerful new features give users a new way of seeing the world."
The Moverio BT-200 should be available for purchase beginning in March and will cost $700. You can read the full press release below.
Epson's Next-Generation Augmented Reality Smart Glasses Built to Revolutionize Gaming, Video Entertainment and More
Android-Powered Moverio BT-200 Enables Powerful Experience of Blended Physical and Digital Worlds with Transparent Display, Head Motion Tracking, Camera, and More
- Las Vegas (NV), United States, January 7, 2014 -
Epson today announced its second generation Moverio "smart glasses" with a combination of new features geared to transform how consumers experience games, video entertainment and the world around them.
Sporting a sleek, light design, the Epson Moverio BT-200 is a true binocular display using a miniaturized LCD-based projection lens system and optical light guide in each side of the glasses. The Moverio platform's advanced binocular optical system projects see-through overlays of digital content onto the real-world in the center of the smart glasses' field of view. Enabling a seamless blend of the physical and digital world, the Moverio BT-200 technology platform makes a new world of augmented reality applications possible for consumers as well as commercial enterprises.
The Moverio BT-200 projects a stereoscopic virtual display with a 16:9 aspect ratio and a 23-degree field of view. A 360-degree panoramic experience is possible through third-party software that takes advantage of the glasses' head-tracking features. For optimum viewing privacy, Moverio's projection system features unique light guide angles which prevent other people from viewing the projected content.
The compact Moverio BT-200 delivers an impressive list of features for augmented reality and digital entertainment experiences, including:
- Bright, transparent display with 960 x 540 pixel (qHD) resolution
- Sensors (gyroscope, accelerometer and magnetic compass) enable head-motion tracking for gaming and hands-free navigation
- A front-facing camera enables image and video capture as well as marker detection for AR apps that give users relevant information related to the real-world
- A handheld controller unit powered by Android 4.0 provides a robust open-source development environment and gives users access to a growing selection of augmented reality apps
- Built-in Wi-Fi® connectivity offers a wireless way to enjoy streaming video content while an optional wireless mirroring adapter enables streaming of high-definition video from content source devices with HDMI connectivity such as DVD players, set-top boxes and more
- Native support of MP4 with H.264 plus AAC encoding allows high-definition video playback
- Bluetooth 3.0 support allow wireless connectivity to headsets, speakers, keyboards and other peripherals
- A MicroSD card slot supports up to 32GB of external memory, allowing users to view and enjoy personal content like photos, videos and music even when wireless access is unavailable
- Dolby® Digital Plus produces a full-body surround sound experience to complement the rich visual experience
"The Epson Moverio BT-200 smart glasses offer consumers crystal clear video as well as access to incredible new augmented reality experiences and relevant information according to their personal interests and needs," said Atsunari Tsuda, General Manager, Visual Products Division, Epson. "Leveraging Epson's leadership in LCD projection technology and visual imaging, the Moverio BT-200's transparent display and powerful new features allow users a new way of seeing the world."
"In addition, the Moverio technology platform can serve as a foundation for designing highly effective visual tools in a wide variety of commercial and vertical market applications, including training, logistics, science, medicine, security, education and more," Tsuda said. "Epson is currently working with premier organizations and development partners to bring these applications to market."
Following is a list of Moverio consumer and enterprise apps being demonstrated at the Epson SmartWare Pavilion, meeting room S214, in the Las Vegas Convention Center during 2014 International CES. These early developer applications reflect a diverse interest in Moverio BT-200 ranging from AR gaming to medical imaging to service repair:
- NAMCO BANDAI Studios Inc. - A table-top virtual fighting game using augmented reality characters
- PSYCLOPS - A virtual reality, first-person shooter by smart glasses app developer Sean McCracken where you have to defend your city from invading aliens
- Sky Temple - A virtual reality, first-person adventure game also by Sean McCracken where you must collect gems and avoid falling thousands of feet below
- Scope AR - ScopeAssist, an in-view, augmented reality assistance app to vastly simplify unfamiliar tasks. Visitors will receive immediate, friendly, voice-driven guidance in one of the most daunting tasks in the modern household...the complete connection of a 5.1 surround sound system.
- Quest-Com - Shooting game using augmented reality characters
Moverio Technology Enterprise Demos
- APX Labs - Multiple demonstrations running on their Skylight platform, a complete and integrated software solution for enterprise smart glasses
- Crane Morley - Augmented reality-based training and consumer marketing apps for the automotive industry
- Evena Medical - Demonstration of the Eyes-Onâ„¢ Glasses, a one-of-a-kind point-of-care wearable medical imaging system which enables nurses to see "through" a patient's skin to the vasculature beneath
- Metaio - Multiple demonstrations running on their platform, including an augmented reality-based app to maintain and repair a Mitsubishi Electric air conditioner
The Moverio BT-200 smart glasses are an example of Epson's open-source wearable tech and app-enabled products. Availability and launch date will vary by region.
Please refer to your local Epson site for details of Epson products.