While the general public is still grappling with the idea of Google Glass, Atheer Labs has just launched an Indiegogo campaign for a pair of specs that move beyond wearable computing. The Atheer Development Kit (ADK) and Atheer One combine hand and finger gesture recognition, an Xbox-quality ARM processor, and a mobile phone battery to layer an augmented-reality world on top of our existing one.
“We have two targets, one for developers who want an early chance to work on our platform,” co-founder Soulaiman Itani told VentureBeat. “The other is for consumers who will be the early adopters. We have had a huge number of people who want to get their hands on it. We are taking it from a technology to a product.” The ADK will sell for $850, while the Atheer One will cost just $350 for Indiegogo donors.
The ADK will be less display-focused than the Atheer One; its two high-definition XGA displays have a 36-degree viewing angle and are roughly the equivalent of having a 15-inch tablet or computer monitor at half arm’s length away from your face. The Atheer One, meanwhile, will tether to Android smartphones and resemble viewing two 26-inch displays at half arm’s length and weigh just 75 grams. Both devices will allow you to manipulate objects in front of your face with a latency of less than five milliseconds, creating what the Mountain View, California-based company calls “immersive computing.”
The applications are endless. Preview videos released by the company show everything from typical weather and calendar displays to exercise and educational programs to tabletop games such as Battleship that an entire group of people with the glasses can play. The ability to interact with the real-world environment allows you to imagine the placement of furniture in a room, select food to meet your nutritional needs (presumably with the help of caloric and nutrition-tracking wearables). ADK believes that next year could truly be the year of “immersive computing” – check out some demos of the apps below and get involved here.