In 2016, Vue debuted its first pair of smart glasses on Kickstarter, where it raised over $2 million. But unlike AR glasses such as North's Focals, the Vue Pro ($299) were regular frames with built-in speakers. It featured bone conduction technology, the ability to listen to calls and audio, as well as activity tracking. Unfortunately due to various delays, it didn't actually ship the Vue Pro until 2019, and some customers appeared unhappy with the experience. Undeterred, the company is back with another iteration of their smart glasses, but without a Kickstarter this time.
Early last year, Scott Blew was standing in line at a food truck in Los Angeles when he caught the glare of Fox News on a television out of the corner of his eye. This is ridiculous, he thought. He couldn't even escape the deluge of the news, or the ubiquity of screens, on a jaunt outdoors to get lunch. You could consciously choose to put your phone away, to step away from your laptop, but then some other screen would pop up elsewhere, whether you liked it or not. Blew, an entrepreneur and engineer, recalled an article he'd recently read in WIRED about a new kind of film that blocked the light emitted from screens.
Most leading phones offer the same basics: Big screens, decent battery life and good cameras. So when a newcomer brings something innovative to the party, why is it difficult to break through a phone market dominated by Apple and Samsung? One such smartphone comes out this week from Red, a company with roots in digital cameras for movie productions. The new Hydrogen One has a holographic screen that produces 3-D visuals without needing special glasses. The new Hydrogen One has a holographic screen that produces 3-D visuals without needing special glasses.
At first glance it looks like Phil Wu is just another guy wearing glasses. But take a second look and you realize there's something missing -- lenses. Instead, projected out from the frames and in the top of Wu's field of vision is what looks like a tiny glass rectangle. Welcome to the world of wearable computers, where glasses can transport you to a world of augmented reality and wristwatches do a lot more than tell time. They could be monitoring your heartbeat.