They look like a stylish pair of augmented reality glasses and that may be one of the reasons why META.01 could come to stifle the vision of Google Glass.
Much like Tony Stark in Iron Man, META.01, founded by Meron Grivetz from Israel in 2012, allows the wearer to manipulate projected images with instinctive hand movements.
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Grivetz claims that his product, which was introduced on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter and will be released in April 2014, outsmarts other augmented reality prototypes that “simply offer superimposed digital readouts with limited control.”
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Wearable Computer Fashion
Wearable technology has not always been fashion-conscious, but Grivetz believes META.01 will be a product you actually want to wear. “We want to make it look like a pair of Ray Bans,” he says.
META.01 essentially uses a mini version of the Xbox Kinect, with depth-sensing infrared cameras that see the world in front of you. Using HD stereoscopic projectors, the transparent screen becomes a display, allowing the wearer to see both the physical and augmented reality directly in front of them.
Grivetz says this allowed them to correct the awkward diagonal glance of Google Glass. META.01 projects the image directly in front of the wearer, while Google Glass displays digital information in the corner of the Glasses. This lessens the awkwardness of social interaction and is vital for driving, Grivetz claims, pointing to the fact that Google Glass has already suffered governmental bans preventing its use while driving.
The Future of Augmented Reality
Low-latency motion tracking software tracks the wearer’s hand movements and enables them to interact with virtual objects. META.01 presents a range of possibilities, from playing virtual chess to manipulating a virtual mushroom.
Grivetz has higher aspirations for his product then simply gaming. He envisions a future in which surgeons will use meta Glasses to visualize MRI and other scans projected onto the patient during surgery. Moreover, he says, architects could be able to design buildings with help of the Glasses.
Meta Glasses raised almost $200,000 in a Kickstarter campaign, doubling its original goal. META.01 is set to be released to the public in April 2014, with a price tag of only $667. They have already collected half a million dollars from pre-orders, including from computer illuminate Steve Wozniack.