Sony Launches A Google Glass Competitor: SmartEyeglass

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Sony has created a prototype device which they call SmartEyeglasses that converts your existing eyewear into ‘smart’ glasses. What sets this apart from Google Glass is that you won’t have to replace your existing glasses with it, you can simply attach it to your existing glasses. This is especially important to people wearing prescribed corrective lenses. Many people who use prescription eyeglasses cannot afford to take them off. To be fair to Google Glass: Designing an attachment that will fit all eyeglasses is complicated and may be prone to insecure attachment (i.e. attachments may fall off).

SmartEyeglass attachment..
The SmartEyeglass device. Image obtained with thanks from Sony.

Sony’s SmartEyeGlass single-lens display module is equipped with a camera, 16 GB of storage, it can be used with your existing phone, and it has a 0.23 inch, colour organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screen with a resolution of 640×400 pixels. The Google Glass has a resolution of 640×360.

A Sony spokeswoman told PC World:

‘The distinguishing feature of the display is its high-resolution OLED, which allows for a high level of contrast and imagery that can be clearly seen in both indoor and outdoor environments,’ a spokeswoman at Sony’s Tokyo headquarters said. ‘The SmartEyeglasses are designed to be worn for long periods of time and can be used to read SMS messages,’ the spokeswoman added, ‘while the device announced today is designed more for shorter periods of use while focusing on another activity.’

The concept of electronic glasses with built-in cameras raises privacy concerns, as they have the potential to record people at inappropriate times without their knowledge. This issue can be addressed by designing the devices to turn on an obvious recording indicator such as a sound or light to notify people nearby that they have started recording. Like virtually every technology, this technology has a good side to it as well.

Cameras are the enemy of criminals and the exposers of police brutality around the world. Their ability to catch abuse people red-handed is essential to making the world a more just place. Holding up a standalone in such situations could attract negative attention and in certain cases, dangerous, as you could be attacked. The consequence of this is that many people won’t capture abuse for fear of being attacked, which is compounded by the prevalent anti-‘snitch’ mentality.

The SmartEyeGlass Attach module will be exhibited at the 2015 CES Las Vegas in January.

Source: PC World.