With its latest product launch, it seems Intel wants the revive the concept of smart glasses. The tech giant has unveiled its own lightweight Google Glass counterpart. But what's imperative is the design of these smart glasses, that make them look like a normal pair, but with smart functionality.
Corroborating the previous rumors from Bloomberg, Intel launched the Vaunt smart glasses foraying into a segment once ruled by Google. First seen by The Verge, the new smart glasses are made of plastic weighing under 50 grams, a tad more than your conventional glasses, but way less than the Google Glass.
Intel has managed to tuck in the electronics in the sterns and control a very low-powered laser that projects a red, monochrome 400 x 150 resolution image into the user's eyes. More importantly, the glasses don't comprise of a camera module, eliminating the possibility of a spyware vulnerability from the glass.
Vaunt also doesn't try to be something straight out of a science fiction movie, it only aims at providing the users with simple heads-up notifications. Intel claims that the glasses are stealthier than a smartwatch, enabling users to check notifications while performing other activities.
In a demo, the company also showed how Vaunt can project a person's info and their birthdays while you are chatting with them on your phone. The inbuilt motion sensors also detect your location and project relevant information based on your surrounding.
You might be thinking that the laser beamed into your eyeball can affect your eyesight, but "it is so low-power that it's at the very bottom end of a class one laser," Intel New Devices Group's Mark Eastwood told The Verge.
Besides, the display isn't visible unless the user looks at it. Since the laser is beamed on to the back of the retina, it's always focused, regardless of whether you have a prescription or nonprescription lenses.
Moreover, the glasses offer Bluetooth to link with the smartphone along with a processor to run apps. The Vaunt can also prompt your location and direction and future models might witness the integration of a microphone that will sync perfectly with voice assistants such as Siri or Alexa.
On the application front, Intel claims that Vaunt will be an open platform. It will soon launch an early access program and SDK for developers to explore the possibilities with it. Most apps will run on the mobile devices, but some apps or features might be powered by the glasses themselves.
Although the new smart glasses are still in developments stage and could be a lot different when it finally hit the shelves, it will be interesting to see the fate of the device in the coming days, considering what happened to the Google Glass.