For a very long time, Augmented Reality (AR) Glasses was only found in science fiction. Audiences were given a glimpse of the world through the eyes of a cyborg (an organism with technological improvements) when watching “Terminator” or “Robocop” in the 1980s and 1990s. The cyborg’s field of vision was overlaid with data, such as the make and model of a car or the threat level offered by an adversary. More recently, AR technology has been incorporated into Iron Man’s astounding, nearly unbreakable armor.
If you’ve ever played around with a smartphone app that shows star constellations, added a Snapchat mask, or experimented with the “Pokémon GO” game, then you’re familiar with the concept in its contemporary incarnations. The average consumer may not be able to purchase an Iron Man suit at the neighborhood mall (yet).
AR glasses just translate the technology to a wearable item.
How Do AR Glasses Work?
Although AR smart glasses come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and designs, they all improve reality with digital overlays.
There are several reasons why people would desire to add useful information and data to their real experiences. Consider sitting in the stands during a football game. Your AR glasses provide essential numbers, scores, and player information while you watch the action. Similarly, if you’re looking for a restaurant while out and about, your AR glasses may show you nearby alternatives, including restaurant ratings and reviews.
AR glasses have changed over the past ten years from being outrageously costly, bulky, and experimental to becoming covert and incredibly useful. Even while it would be a stretch to call any brand of AR glasses inexpensive, the price has decreased significantly. Competition is anticipated to drive innovation and design while also continuing to drive down cost as new businesses enter the market.
The gaming industry is the one place where this tendency is most obvious. The idea of immersing oneself in their favorite adventures excites video game players, but the ordinary player is hesitant (if not unable) to spend thousands of dollars on gaming equipment, no matter how fantastic the experience is said to be.
Companies who can provide even the most basic capabilities at an affordable price now have an opportunity, and numerous organizations reportedly have prototypes in development.
How Do The AR Glasses Function?
Although AR glasses have a wide range of capabilities, they typically work with a front-facing camera and software that can identify certain anchors and landmarks.
For instance, if you use augmented reality (AR) software intended to assist you in decorating your house, the program will identify features such as the frame of a window or the intersection of two walls. By projecting the photos onto the lens of the glasses you are wearing, the program may use that information to create images of draperies and potted plants and “place” them in your range of vision.
Of course, this is only one example; in reality, functionality is only constrained by the developers’ imaginations.
Here are a few examples of functionality that various businesses are developing:
- When an AR headset has a microphone built in, Alexa or Siri may be used to do voice-activated searches, with the results appearing before your eyes.
- Your smart AR glasses can detect your surroundings using simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) algorithms, enabling you to manipulate the pictures you view using hand movements.
- Being able to read and ignore message notifications that show covertly in your area of vision without having to take out your phone.
- Virtual arrows will appear in your field of vision thanks to embedded GPS technology, guiding you in the right direction so you never get lost again.
Consider that all of this capability—as well as more—is currently being included into smart contact lenses if it seems incredible that functionality like this might be contained in a device as thin and lightweight as a pair of spectacles.
Miniature solar panel technology is being developed alongside cameras that can be operated with the blink of an eye. Furthermore, smart contact lenses may track a variety of health information, such as blood sugar levels and glaucoma symptoms, by just contacting the body.
VR Versus AR Glasses
The degree to which reality is altered when you gaze through virtual reality (VR) glasses and augmented reality (AR) glasses is their fundamental distinction. While VR mimics a whole new reality, AR glasses overlay information on your actual view of the environment.
Because Of This, VR Technology Tends To Become More Immersive. Virtual Reality Is Frequently provided through a bulkier headgear rather than glasses. In most circumstances, the equipment comprises speakers to stimulate the user’s aural senses; but, in certain instances, the equipment may also include body coverings that can stimulate the user’s haptic (touch) senses.
VR aims to make the user feel as though they are somewhere else. The advantage of augmented reality over virtual reality is that it enables users to work, play, and interact with their surroundings while still receiving more information.
Companies are connecting employees from different geographical locations through the usage of AR glasses for training and remote collaboration. Despite the limitations of social distance during the 2020–21 pandemic, AR glasses have allowed businesses to continue training and preserve consistency in work performance.
Through the use of an item we are already accustomed to and at ease with: our glasses, augmented reality technology has the potential to incorporate smartphone functions (and more) into our daily lives.
What businesses are developing AR glasses?
The bar for AR glasses research and development has been established for a while by Google and Apple. But more lately, brands like Microsoft, Facebook, Vuzix, Epson, and others have risen and taken the lead.