After Google deeply explored the connected eyewear market with its coveted Google Glass, Sony is taking a dive into wearable computing with SmartEyeglass.
Just like Google, Sony is taking a precautionary start with a developer edition of the high-tech specs but for a price cheaper than Glass. The Japanese tech giant is hoping to seal a different fate unlike Google, which stopped sales of its wearable computer in January. Sony's new eyewear is available for pre-order now and will hit select markets starting March.
Sony's developer edition of the SmartEyeglass looks like a pair of regular eyewear with a transparent screen in the lenses. This will serve as the display for notifications, mapping directions and more after the eyewear is paired with an Android smartphone. Much like the Google Glass, Sony SmartEyeglass is short on battery and lasts about 2 hours and 30 minutes, CNET reports.
Sony's 77-gram glasses are not only heavier than the Google Glass but also rely on a wired handheld controller. Comparatively, Google Glass has a more subtle look than Sony's black-rimmed eyewear. The SmartEyeglass displays information in green color only and works with handsets running Android 4.4 and above, according to the company.
Price and availability
Sony has a low pricing advantage with its AR smart glass and sells at almost half the Google Glass price. The developer edition SED-E1 SmartEyeglass can be pre-ordered for $840, £520, €670 or 100,000 yen. Currently, software developers in the U.K. and Germany can book the device while those in the U.S. and Japan will have to wait until next month for availability.
Sony has plans to expand availability of its hi-tech glass to France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Sweden in the near future.