One of the gems that caught my eye of the companies at the UK Pavilion at CES2020.
AircardsAR are web-based Augmented Reality campaigns which work on any smartphone producing consumer engagement in physical environs. Effectively a new digital channel and engagement where one previously didn’t exist. Clever visual animations, 2D/3D video and special effects are deployed within the AR experience, driving consumer interaction. Not just AR content, but they manage all development, technical coordination, and cloud-based infrastructure deployment. AirCardsAR clients receive access to an in-depth analytics dashboard to track performance, including metrics such as views, click- throughs, bounce rate and dwell time. These are web-based Augmented Reality campaigns which work on any smartphone, meaning no app download is required. Simply scan, tap and be blown away.
As I have put forth many times before, AR is about content and applications that Augment Reality in a consumer valuable and friendly way. Aircards has produced an easy to use and valuable experience.
As I have said many times in the past - AR is not just about AR glasses, it's about Content and Applications! Well, Anomaly Productions presented its line of innovative Augmented Reality books at CES2020 and their content is creative and engaging, interactive and experiential! Children’s books that become sweeping worlds of scifi-fantasy, they have evolved publishing into new factual and fantasy dimensions, augmenting the pages into the narrative to create a powerful new form of storytelling.
Armed with the book and a smartphone or tablet, download the free apps, point, and never look at books the same way again. Anomaly Productions is a new kind of media company that combines stunning artwork and rich stories to build deeply immersive worlds than can be experienced across multiple platforms and in a multitude of ways and in full 3D. Simply open the book, launch the app and point the camera at the pages and watch the magic unfold. Interact with and walk around the scenes.
Through AR technology they produce a seamless experience between the screen and the printed page. AR technology creates models from content that take a brand new experience to readers of any age to the next level.
With this content and application AR is an incredibly exhilarating the experience. Great use of digital and emerging technologies to make storytelling come alive for kids (and adults :-)
Smart glasses currently have several problems, one of which is being small enough to look "normal" when worn by consumers. Another problem is related to power – the battery is barely enough for several hours of operation.
Bosch seems to be making an attempt (along with many others :-) to solve these problems and offer smart glasses components for a wide range of types of users. It has developed a new approach to the production of augmented reality displays. The technology, called Light Drive, will turn any glasses into “smart” ones, practically without burdening them (they say).
Their claims - The system is 30% flatter than existing solutions and the smallest system of its kind on the market. It weighs less than 10 grams. A MEMS-based bundled light scanner inside the Light Drive System scans a holographic element (HOE) that is integrated into the lenses of the glasses. As with solutions of all tupes of consumer AR glasses, the technology enables the user a hands-free, secure viewing of virtually all information from a connected mobile device. Technology-wise, it reflects light from a holographic element directly into the retina, projecting alerts, calls, wake-up calls, appointment reminders and short message services or navigation information. Besides, the technology will be ideal for notes-based information such as task lists, shopping lists, recipes or assembly instructions that are particularly practical, where it is important to keep your hands free.
Sort of a standard description for AR, but their new approach has caught my eye and gives me reason to make note and watch their developments. But, to be sure, AR is actually about valuable applications and content, so a bit of a chicken and egg situation which an acceptable consumer friendly type of glasses might begin to hatch. I am monitoring with interest...
Firstly, their Smart Swim product is an addition to swimming goggles which now hits the consumer market with proper functional Augmented Reality benefits. Basically, Smart Swim is a heads-up display for swimmers that provides in-depth workout status and information in real-time, as well as the capability to stream video content during swimming workouts providing performance info, inspiration and entertainment for athletes during training.The creation of newly formed Vuzix Labs division, Smart Swim takes swimming workouts to the next level in terms of interval training capabilities. Smart Swim not only provides swimming workout status, including elapsed time, yardage and laps and a coach to swimmer connection, but it also allows the swimmer to download and preview workouts, record their workouts and even stream video from the Smart Swim video player, all while in the pool or open waters. The Smart Swim easily fits over virtually any swim goggles, so the swimmer can stay with their existing favorite pair. Smart Swim includes an Android computer, a vibrant full color display, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, head tracker, GPS, compass, internal battery, USB and much more.
Continuing their commitment to providing smart glasses solutions to the industrial industries, Vuzix also introduced their M4000 AR display which builds on their existing M400 tried and tested ergonomic design but adds to it their new larger field of view, see-through Waveguide optics. The new display plus a Snapdragon XR1 processor provides smoother operations and higher functionality. Nice to see AR headsets providing value and moving so successfully into a such broad range of applications and sectors which was clearly demonstrated at CES2020 by numerous Vuzix partners who were also demonstrating their solutions both at the Vuzix booth and at their own exhibit stands. See listing of companies and applications they were showing HERE
13 March 2015 - I have been an outspoken advocate of Augmented Reality needing to be a Five Senses experience simply because our 'reality' experience involves all five, 24/7. I have been working with a stealth start up in the process of bringing context driven fragrance and scent dispensing into the wearable technology space. More on that sometime soon :-)
As a followup to the Wearable Technology Show this past week, I met with Adrian David Cheok, Professor of Pervasive Computing at City University London and Founder and Director of the Mixed Reality Lab in Singapore.
He introduced me to Scentee, a scent spraying APPessory to iOS and Android Smartphones. A bit large to fit in your pocket, but not bad for a first pass at producing smells on demand or remotely over long distances.
Scentee also is the technology for an Oscar Meyer Bacon campaign that made the technology and an APP called "Wake Up and Smell the Bacon" available to lucky contest winners.
Basically when your alarm on your phone goes off, it makes the sizzling sound and produces a puff of the smell of Bacon to get you interested in actually getting up and cooking some!
This all Caught My Eye and my Olfactories!
It's a start...
More to come! Watch this space!
This was one of the interesting discoveries that caught my eye at the JETCO Japan Pavilion. A Google Glass-like wearable display which could be carried like a pen in the pocket, and then "transformed" into a one-eye display with camera, battery and software on board. On the table was a working Vuzix M100 I suppose to show how the concept model could be used in various applications.
i found the concept interesting for someone who would use Smart Glasses off and on in the course of the day in their profession. Sort of like taking out your glasses to get a clearer, close up look at a situation, but in this case with image capture, remote assistance and relevant information on tap.
A nice concept, but not sure of the useability aspects.
I say, let's just move on quickly to the next phase - normal looking glasses with lenses that augment your vision with relevant info, and do a bit of life blogging and sharing at the same time!
There was an impressive demo at the Fujitsu booth showing how a maintenance engineer could observe and adjust flow rates in pipe and valves and make sure they were operating properly and even make adjustments to controls. Smart Glasses from Vuzix were coupled to a "smart gesture" glove to put the engineer in control of a number of complex operations.
it was quite an impressive demo from the Augmented Reality perspective, but I'm hoping that the technologically impressive, but somewhat cumbersome "glove" will be replaced with hand gestures and voice command recognition in the near future.
DoCoMo had a very effective demo of face recognition at their booth. They were showing how headworn Smart Glasses with both camera and display on board can see, analyse and then display to the user info about the person being looked at. Leads to all kind of questions about privacy, etc. But the state of the technology is well demonstrated by this demo.
It illustrated well the art of the possible in terms of image recognition and the resulting display of relevant information which has many applications and in professional and industrial terms, would be quite empowering especially in situations where the user needs access to info about what he is looking at and needs to operate in a handsfree mode.
The demo was shown using Google Glass which is still in developer only mode ("Explorers") and commercially available Vuzix M100 which is already being deployed in several industrial applications.
Smart Glasses have graduated from the geeky gadgets phase to business enhancing use cases. The top three Smart Glasses in terms of commercial availability were present on many booths at MWC being used to show off real money making or saving applications.
What caught my eye was the showing of workplace enhancing applications by many of the large corporations using Smart Glasses in real industrial and professional applications. Smart Glasses from the three Smart Glasses leaders, Google, Vuzix and Epson were on show demoing specific industrial applications such as warhousing operations, field repair, flow control, face recognition, security, and others. Often these were shown interchangeably with a single application being shown most often on Google Glass and Vuzix M100.
Vuzix devices were shown exclusively on the Fujitsu, BarcodEye and Brilliant Services booths.
SAP and DoCoMo were showing Applications on Google Glass and Vuzix M100 all three were used with various Augmented Reality applications on the Wikitude and Metaio booths.
quite an advancement from last year where only prototype devices were on show.
Evidence of the Augmented Reality and Smart Glasses ecosystem forming for end to end solutions took major steps forward at MWC.
Firstly, Layar, Metaio and Wikitude, the largest AR platform providers, have cooperated to make it easy for AR content to be shared across their technology platforms. There was a demonstration of AR content being used interchangeably by these browsers at an Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) event at the Institut Cartogràfic de Catalunya (ICC) during the Mobile World Congress. This will greatly expand the scope of content creators and application developers to apply their innovations across multiple platforms.
Secondly, was the joint announcement of AR software platform company Wikitude and Vuzix of an alliance to offer SDK and APIs for Wikitude licensees to develop AR applications directly on the Vuzix M100 Smart Glasses device. This follows a similar alliance announcement made previously between Vuzix and Metaio.