The arrival of a pair of BT-300 Smart Glasses gave me an opportunity to take another daft photo of myself wearing a wearable. My eyes don’t really look like that – that’s just where the (presumably) semi-silvered mirror surface is for each eye. Projectors at the sides generate images that are combined with the real light coming in to form a composite AR image.
The BT-300 is an interesting counterpoint to the HoloLens. The HoloLens is of course a Mixed Reality (MR) device with spatial mapping sensors and has double the field of view. On the other hand it is heavy and will get hot if completely thrashed (and some of my code does indeed thrash it). The BT-300 by contrast is very light and shows little sign of getting hot (so far) as a lot of stuff is in a separate battery/controller box.
The controller has a four way ring with central enter button (at the bottom as shown here) and a trackpad at the top. It actually makes for quite an interesting experience. Definitely feels like a next generation Google Glass – it too is an Android device incidentally (HoloLens is UWP). However the BT-300 also has a normal looking Android UI and runs Unity 3D. Here’s another daft photo of me…
I just want to make it clear that I never left the house wearing these so don’t hate me. Glass has a single display out of the direct line of sight which is useful in some ways and limiting in others. The BT-300’s 3D display in the line of sight opens up a lot more possibilities.
It certainly feels like it would be possible to wear the the BT-300 for a long time which is really a requirement for many AR applications (such as assisting production workers). Some form of spatial locking can be achieved using markers but, of course, it doesn’t have the general purpose spatial mapping capabilities of the HoloLens. Still, it is a nicely put together device and could be very useful if true MR functionality isn’t required. And it is much cheaper than the HoloLens!