Avegant had designed a retinal head-mounted display a while ago, which was not for general public release. Even when it looked like this, people were interested, because of the technology the device used and the far-reaching applications of device. The company’s latest disclosure has me excited and I can’t wait to see them close up.
The designers at Avegant have now pushed forward from their early designs and will be releasing a consumer version that will be called Glyph. The Avegant team will debut the Glyph device on January 22nd on Kickstarter with a pre-order price of $499. Avegant had its previous generation prototype on hand last month at Engadget Expand and you will be able to see the new version soon as it will be on display at CES.
The headset will have integrated noise-cancelling headphones combined with a flip-down display. This enables the unit to double as a standard set of headphones, when you are not in the mood to watch crystal clear video content, projected from the built-in virtual retinal display.
The prototype virtual retinal display (VRD) delivers very sharp definition and a realistic image even with low-resolution sources. It does this by projecting directly into each eye using an array of two million micro-mirrors.
There is no screen inside the device, although apparently your brain interprets the signal as an 80-inch panel viewed from eight feet away. The effect isn’t entirely dissimilar to what you’ll find with other products, such as Vuzix’s Wrap glasses. However the quality and the overall experience, quite simply destroys the competition.
The HMD is designed to make everyday media look better, but the developers CTO Alan Evans and CEO Edward Tang, also envision a variety of content created specifically for the display.
The production model is expected to weigh significantly less than the prototype. It will also house integrated sound and a battery pack for power on the go. It’ll be just as powerful, however, despite the design tweaks. The HMD, which can handle 240Hz content, will be able to connect to a variety of sources such as DVD players, laptops, smartphones and game consoles. The headset will serve as a head-tracking VR device during game play, similar to the Oculus Rift but it’ll be just as comfortable consuming movies and TV shows, or even surfing the net.
[Image via tested]