Laforge seeks funding for fashion-friendly Icis smart glasses

Feb 20, 2014 by Nancy Owano weblog

(Phys.org) —The wearables smart specs marketplace is a trend yet to happen. On the one hand, proponents emphasize how cool it will be to stay connected via wearables without having to keep extracting and replacing a handheld device. On the other side is parody suggesting those wearing smart glasses will look odd, not sophisticated. There is also worry over what others' reactions might be if taking the leap to wear a smart eyewear device in public. Laforge Optical, a Boston-based group, wants to provide a confidence boost in the form of smart eyeglasses where the tech aspect is real but not obvious. Icis takes on the form of conventional eyewear, using a special set of optics blended into the lenses. The device is equipped with a battery that delivers up to six hours of battery life. The Laforge goal is to launch smart eyeglasses without the clunky look, without the intrusion aura, without causing the self-thoughts. After all, making one kind of eyewear to fit everyone's face, says their promotional video, is like making one pair of shoes to fit everyone's feet. Instead, "We are creating a choice of styles, colors and shapes to complement your personality."

Using a specialized app called socialFlo, the user picks which apps communicate with the smartspecs. Once socialFlo is installed on the user's smartphone, the apps can be selected and they appear as widgets. The system works with iOS, Android, and Windows phone platforms. Icis features a camera, microphone, and speaker to complement the smartphone hardware

Though the company site describes the wearableas as "prescription eyewear" anyone who does not need a prescription can also wear it. The team's FAQ asks, "Are these glasses available without a prescription?" The answer is "Yes! If you have perfect eyesight, your prescription is "0".

The Icis is a work in progress. The company has taken to the crowdfunding site Indiegogo to launch a campaign. "After two years doing circuit layouts, design drawings, and traveling across the country to meet with prospective partners, we have reached the limits of what we can do with our resources," said the team on Indiegogo. Their goal is to raise $80,000.

This video is not supported by your browser at this time.

For those who like the concept of a hands-free, wearable screen worn as an eyeglass pair, yet who lean toward a minimalist view that good design means as little as possible, this eyeglass product will be appealing. Laforge company founder Corey Mack has a degree in engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology; he said on his website that he has been a minimalist most of his life. "I have found myself always trying to reduce the complexity of a design or idea by combining multiple functions or tasks. When it comes to design I feel the same way. I am not a fan of gaudy or over-complicated product designs." The company team, like Mack, studied at the Rochester Institute of Technology. They are offering a range of prices and deals that go with pledge options. Shipping dates, depending on the pledge type, are December and January 2015.

Explore further: Patent shows Samsung's rival to Google Glass

More information: www.indiegogo.com/projects/laf… iption-smart-glasses

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

SeeThru AR eyewear device sets sights on consumer market

Jan 18, 2014

(Phys.org) —By air, by sea, by workout trails, augmented reality headsets have just got more interesting with Laster Technologies' SeeThru eyewear. Laster recently launched its SeeThru campaign on Kickstarter, ...

Google hopes designer frames will sharpen Glass

Jan 28, 2014

Google Glass is getting glasses. The computerized, Internet-connected goggles don't actually come with lenses in its frame. Starting Tuesday, Google is offering an optional attachment for prescription lenses ...

Tethercell battery could redefine smartphone control

Jan 11, 2013

(Phys.org)—An Indiegogo project by Tetherboard drew interest at CES in Las Vegas this week where a novel concept of phone battery was demonstrated. The prototype on show was Tethercell, an adapter which ...

LG Chem turns to stepped, curve and cable batteries

Oct 09, 2013

(Phys.org) —Stories have been rolling in from technology news sites this week about vendors in a race to debut curved smartphones and flexible OLED panels for smartphones. Also making news on Tuesday is ...

Recommended for you

A smart wristband for nocturnal cyclists

22 hours ago

Five EPFL PhD students have developed a wristband that flashes when the rider reaches out to indicate a turn. Their invention was recognized at a European competition.

Lenovo's smart glasses prototype has battery at neck

Jul 28, 2014

China's PC giant Lenovo last week offered a peek at its Google Glass-competing smart glass prototype, further details of which are to be announced in October. Lenovo's glasses prototype is not an extreme ...

Sapphire talk enlivens guesswork over iPhone 6

Jul 27, 2014

Sapphire screens for the next iPhone? Sapphire is second only to diamond in hardness scratch-proof properties, used in making LEDs, missiles sensors, and on screens for luxury-tier phones. Last year, the ...

Startup offers elderly an Internet key to family links

Jul 27, 2014

Two grandmothers mystified by computer tablets have inspired a French-Romanian startup to develop an application and service to help the elderly stay in touch with their relatives through the Internet.

User comments : 0