But so far, one company has clearly led the way in the development of smartglasses. In fact, Google has been so closely associated with the smartglass revolution that one tech writer coined the term glogging to describe blogging with Google Glass.
Of course, all of that may be about to change.
Atheer Labs Introduces Immersive Experience
The word you hear repeated most often by developers at Athere Labs to describe their new smartglass prototypes is “immersive.” And a glimpse of what the company says these devices can do certainly seems to bear that out.
Check out this video shared with the Indiegogo community, where Athere Labs is trying to raise $100,000 for release of two devices (nearly $83,000 has already been raised) :
Google Glass offers a computer display projected against one lens of the wearable glasses. The device allows you to check online information and control the taking of point-of-view video and photos.
The new devices from Athere create a 3D experience with a 36 degree field of vision. The glasses create the impression of a tablet display screen floating just in front of your eyes.
The 3D effect is visible through both lenses on the devices. And gesture recognition technology even makes it possible for you to scroll through online documents, turn pages and do searches with a swipe of your finger.
New Athere Devices Set for 2014 Release
A consumer device called the Athere One starts at $350 and can be pre-ordered now on the company website for estimated shipment in late 2014. The device allows you to connect to an Android smartphone and use it to access online information, games and even videos.
Developers say connecting with an Android device means you have access to around 800,000 apps in the Android app store.
A developer version of the glasses called simply the “Developer Kit” starts at $850. And it should be available in early 2014. It comes with USB and other connections designed so that developers can hook up a tablet and use it to develop new applications.
A Truly Mobile Business Tool
Just based on initial impressions, it looks as if the new devices may have real potential as business tools.
While news on Google Glass has focused mainly around its ability to capture images and to be a source of multitasking distraction, the Athere devices may be different.
However, Athere developers have focused on accessing data rather than taking photos or video. There is no way to use the new devices while driving or performing any other activity. However, there may be a benefit for business owners away from the office to be able to immerse themselves in important work online. And that’s without the need to carry a laptop or even a tablet along.
Image: Athere Labs