Google rumored to have built Heads-Up-Display glasses prototype

Feb 08, 2012 by Bob Yirka weblog
Oakley THUMP 2

(PhysOrg.com) -- 9to5Google is reporting that they have received a tip from someone they believe to be a reliable source saying that Google is working on a Heads-Up-Display (HUD) pair of eye-glasses. The person offering the tip has apparently seen a prototype and says the glasses resemble a pair of Oakley Thumps, except for the HUD side attachment. Oakley Thumps are sunglasses with earbuds attached.

According to the source, the HUD side attachment is not transparent and doesn’t have any 3D capabilities, thus it appears Google has simply affixed a Smartphone screen to the side of a pair of glasses. This news follows a report last December by the New York Times, where they said they had inside information indicating that Google was working on some type of “wearable” HUD.

This new source describes the glasses as having a very tiny camera mounted on the front and a flash unit of some kind, presumably to take pictures, but more likely to provide visual information for the HUD. Other features include a microphone and speakers, RAM storage and a processing chip to allow the glasses to run Android, which means they should function as a Smartphone, rather than as an accessory to one.

Perhaps most interesting is the means by which the HUD is controlled. The source says it’s done via slight, barely noticeable head movements and voice commands. Both of which are reportedly easy to get used to when actually using the device.

The source also says that Google appears uncertain regarding how to proceed with its prototype, as it’s not clear to them if it should be pushed as a pilot program ala the Cr-48 Chromebook, or sold directly to consumers as a cool geek toy.

This new HUD device, if it ever does hit the market, doesn’t appear to fulfill the likely expectations of sci-fi and gadget enthusiasts who have for years been dreaming of having their own Terminator or more recently Iron Man type glasses that are transparent and offer up relevant information about the environment in truly meaningful ways, such as what’s on the menu of a nearby restaurant, or the name and phone number of girls in a nightclub. Still, as with most new gadgetry, the first baby steps often lead to the eventual dream, and if does decide to sell some version of their new prototype, it’s likely many will want to at least try them out in anticipation of the next iteration.

Explore further: GoPro gets a little cheaper —and fancier —with new Hero4 camera

Related Stories

LG to introduce Google TV at CES 2012

Jan 06, 2012

LG Electronics will introduce its highly anticipated Google TV at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. LG Smart TV with Google TV combines the familiarity of Google’s Android OS with ...

Video recording spy glasses coming to a face near you

Jun 09, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- ZionEyez, a Seattle-based startup, has created a pair of spy glasses that have the capability of recording and sharing HD video discreetly. The product in question, which has been named the ...

MIT student builds self-balancing electric unicycle

Dec 29, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- If ever you go look outside at all the traffic on the road, it's hard to not come to the conclusion that what’s needed is a smaller vehicle; perhaps one that doesn’t take up any ...

Household cleaners effectively remove lead-laden dust

Dec 15, 2005

All-purpose detergents remove lead-contaminated dust from household surfaces just as effectively as high phosphate detergents and lead-specific cleaning products, according to new research scheduled for publication in the ...

Recommended for you

Slingbox lets you watch live TV at home or elsewhere

21 minutes ago

Man's second-best friend, television, gets out of the house more than ever. On a smartphone app or laptop, people watch sports on WatchESPN, movies and original programming on HBO Go or Netflix, and weekly network TV series.

China clears way for Apple iPhone 6 sales

17 hours ago

China has cleared the way for Apple to sell its latest iPhones in the key market by granting it a licence, the industry regulator said on Tuesday, after the US giant agreed to improve the security of users' ...

A Closer Look: Stream-box gaming is a mixed bag

Sep 29, 2014

As gaming consoles such as the Xbox and the PlayStation diversify into video, social media and other non-gaming apps, it seems only fair that streaming TV devices start nudging into gaming territory.

Turkey's Erdogan dismisses new iPhone: 'Same as the last'

Sep 28, 2014

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, known for his hostility to social networks and mobile technology, on Sunday brushed off the frenzy surrounding Apple's new iPhone 6, saying it was much the same as its iPhone 5 predecessor.

User comments : 4

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

vikkyg
3 / 5 (2) Feb 08, 2012
Wait, why do they have to be transparent? Can't there just be a camera that sends video to the screens and shows you what's ahead of you? (plus some cool overlay text?)
Vendicar_Decarian
5 / 5 (3) Feb 08, 2012
The object of the game is to remove the limitations of small screens and provide full visual field video.

Glasses already on the market can already do this but generally with poor resolution unless the cost is excessively high.

Once the display is in place, the only limitation will be the input interface to the mobile device.

For pointer and gesture input the input interface shouldn't be difficult to implement either. A two axis palm controller mounted to the wrist will work fine.

However for text input, keyboards will always be optimal, followed by voice input provided they can improve voice recognition significantly.
manfredrc
not rated yet Feb 14, 2012
The object of the game is to remove the limitations of small screens and provide full visual field video.

Glasses already on the market can already do this but generally with poor resolution unless the cost is excessively high.

Once the display is in place, the only limitation will be the input interface to the mobile device.

For pointer and gesture input the input interface shouldn't be difficult to implement either. A two axis palm controller mounted to the wrist will work fine.

However for text input, keyboards will always be optimal, followed by voice input provided they can improve voice recognition significantly.


Dude that's awesome.
DoomRater
not rated yet Feb 22, 2012
Using a camera to simply put what the camera sees ahead of you is going to be worse than wearing a medieval helmet with the visor down. It'd be great for a pair of digital binoculars that can take pictures too, but not that great for just walking around unless you developed the visor the screen is on very differently.

Transparency is the next step and would turn them into a viable tool for what I'd need- a HUD eyepiece for my biosuit.