Sony Develops Transparent Lens Eyewear 'SmartEyeglass'

TOKYO—Sony announced the development of “SmartEyeglass,” transparent lens eyewear that connects with compatible smartphones—Android 4.1 or later; Android 4.3 or later for video functionality—to superimpose information such as text, symbols, and images, onto the user’s field of view.

SmartEyeglass is equipped with a range of sensing technologies, including a CMOS image sensor, accelerometer, Gyroscope, electronic compass, brightness sensor, and microphone. SmartEyeglass utilizes these features, together with GPS location information from the connected smartphone, to provide information optimized to the user’s current circumstances.

Sony said it has leveraged its hologram-optics technology to develop a lens that achieves high transparency of 85 percent and thickness of 3.0 mm, without the use of half mirrors that obstruct the user’s vision. The monochrome display is meant to ensure that while energy consumption is lower than a color display, high luminance (up to 1,000 cd/m2) is achieved, to deliver a screen with clear readability that allows the user to read text in a wide range of environments.

The exchange of various types of data such as sensing information between SmartEyeglass and a wirelessly connected smartphone means that, depending on the smartphone application, the device has the potential to be used in a range of scenarios. For example, users will be able to view navigation information while walking, check a recipe while cooking without taking their eyes from their hands, or view information related to a certain player while watching a sports game in a stadium.

Sony plans to release a dedicated SmartEyeglass Software Development Kit on Sept. 19 to enable developers to expand upon their unique ideas for creating scenarios in which SmartEyeglass can be used, and to boost various application development.

Development support website for applications compatible with Sony products: “Sony Developer World

After releasing this SDK, Sony plans to offer SmartEyeglass for sale to developers by the end of FY2014, with the intention of further promoting the development of applications and accelerating the commercialization of the product for consumer use.

Sony’s SmartWear experiences draw on the combination of its sensing technologies and smartphones to enable users to log their daily activities (Lifelog), and help them bring even greater enjoyment and convenience to their lives. Going forward, Sony will continue to offer products, applications, and services that aim to enrich each user’s daily activities and further proliferate the Sony SmartWear experience.