While news coming out of the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is usually all about the latest in TVs, smartphones, video game consoles and computers, this year’s show was a bit different as wearable technologies, such as smart glasses and spectacle cameras, made a huge impact. Additionally, other eye-related technologies also made a splash at the show.
Here’s a quick rundown of some of the hottest vision-associated products unveiled and spotlighted at this year’s CES, which took place January 5-8 in Las Vegas.
Smart Glasses & Wearables
As we reported last month, Italian eyewear manufacturer Safilo Group and Interaxon Inc. unveiled its new SAFILOX eyewear platform at CES 2017, which is designed to integrate brain-sensing and cognitive training technology into eyewear in the Safilo portfolio, including the brands Smith, Carrera and Polaroid. The first product reportedly built on the new platform is Smith’s Lowdown Focus Mpowered by Muse (pictured right) — a pair of "smart" sunglasses designed for athletes and outdoor enthusiasts, delivering cognitive training technology via eyewear that can be worn every day. The Smith Lowdown Focus Mpowered by Muse sunglasses are expected to be available to consumers in the third quarter of 2017.
Vuzix Blade 3000 Smart Glasses
Vuzix® Corporation showcased both its new M3000 Smart Glasses and Blade 3000 Smart Glasses at CES 2017. The M3000 Smart Glasses were designed for commercial, professional and enterprise users to improve existing workflows and open new opportunities in industrial, medical, retail, supply chain, remote help desk, and other aspects of the user's business. And the Blade 3000 Smart Glasses are ideal for mobile applications — from social media to video recording — as well as fitness tracking and business functionality.
PogoTec used CES 2017 to announce strategic partnerships with leading eyewear designers to manufacture and distribute compatible frames for its PogoCam™ — reportedly the world's smallest wearable camera attachable to eyewear. During the show, PogoTec displayed more than 25 frame styles with PogoTrack™ attached, including 12 styles of Ocean Pacific eyewear from ClearVision Optical in both prescription optical and sunglass categories; a complete line of Argus Vision sunglasses in a rugged and lightweight wrap design; designs from Italian frame maker Vista Eyewear; and 12 styles of Foster Grant® sunglasses by FGX International. PogoTrack is reportedly a proprietary universal platform for a wide range of future electronic wearable device that goes beyond the PogoCam's capabilities.
The new eye-tracking system VPS 16 from Viewpointsystem received an honoree award from the CES 2017 Innovation Awards. The product is a high-performance eye-tracker in a wearable pair of glasses for use in a wide range of applications, from vision training to market research. Cameras are concealed in the frame and nose pads so as not to impair natural viewing behavior. The system can be linked up for live transmission, and in the near future will reportedly be able to track emotions by measuring pupil reactions.
Focalmax exhibited its new individual AR smart glasses called SCATI S1. The glasses are equipped with a high-resolution camera in the front, as well as a self-developed optical lens that creates a 5-inch virtual perspective 250 mm from the eye. All data is directly transmitted via HDMI by connecting with "intelligent terminals" such as smartphones, allowing the wearer to read data and messages and watch videos without interruption to their natural field of vision.
FGX International showcases PogoCam™ Ready Sunglass Styles, an innovative collaboration with PogoTec™, at CES 2017.
And computer manufacturing company Lenovo™ announced its entry into the smart glasses category with its new Glass C200. The product reportedly combines augmented reality (AR) and artificial intelligence (AI), giving wearers the ability to better perform their jobs, access information faster, and connect easier with remote co-workers.
Speaking of AR, there were also a number of AR wearable displays included in the smart glasses mix at CES 2017. For example, Lumus Ltd. showed its new Maximum prototype at CES 2017, which has a top-down design allowing users to wear their own prescription glasses for the AR experience. Lumus also highlighted is Sleek prototype focused on style, compactness and mobility for more casual everyday use.
AR solution group Maxst unveiled its new Revelio stereoscopic smart glasses. The glasses are reportedly designed to be simple to use and lightweight, weighing less than 190 grams, while providing a 720p display, 40 degrees of field of view (FOV), and 2G memory.
And HiScene showcased HiAR Glasses — reportedly China's first binocular all-in-one AR smart glasses. The smart glasses are equipped with the Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 820 processor for powerful computing and graphics processing abilities, and allows for voice interaction with artificial intelligence and natural 3D gesture operations. Powered by an optical projection system with free-form waveguide, the HiAR Glasses provide a high-def 3D AR vision experience while using thin, high-comfort lenses.
Vision & Healthcare Technologies
Fuel3D 360 Scanner
Smart glasses and wearable technologies aside, other vision- and healthcare-related technologies were also debuted or showcased at CES 2017.
Health technology company RightEye LLC used the show to launch three new assessments to identify autism and reading disorders, as well as training games to improve vision in patients with traumatic brain injury (TBI) and other eye movement disorders. The new RightEye GeoPref Autism Test™ can help doctors more accurately and objectively identify early stages of autism in children 12 to 40 months old, while the RightEye Reading Test™ is an objective, repeatable test to identify reading disorders in students at all grade levels. And the RightEye Vision Training Games™ combine the thrill of gaming with eye-tracking technology to support rehabilitation from TBI, eye movement training and peripheral awareness therapy.
Fuel3D, which produces 3D scanning platforms for virtual try-on, custom-fit eyewear, unveiled its new 360 Scanner, capable of capturing highly-detailed 360-degree 3D data in just 0.3 seconds. The scanner can capture both shape and color data of mid-sized objects — such as the human head and shoulders — allowing it to be used for such applications as custom eyewear fitting, facial measurements for retail services, and pre- and post-surgical treatment analysis.
EyeQue Personal Vision Tracker™
EyeQue™ was named a CES 2017 Best of Innovation Awards honoree for its EyeQue Personal Vision Tracker™. The product is reportedly the first in-home vision testing to combine a cloud-based technology platform, smartphone app and miniature optical scope to form a low-cost, precise option for the gathering of corrective vision measurements. Results from the measurements are reportedly instantly processed and stored in the cloud, and can be shared with doctors.
And for patients who need help remembering to take their medication, PillDrill, Inc. was also named a CES 2017 Innovation Awards honoree for PillDrill — a smart medication tracking system. The compact device sits next to a patient's pills and issues clear audio-visual alerts when they should be taking their next dose. And to indicate a dose has been taken, the user waves their medication container in front of the device, triggering a real-time update to family members and other concerned parties.