Though smart glasses haven’t been widely successful, they’re not completely dead in enterprise. Google recently came out with an industry version of Glass, and now Toshiba is trying to enter the same space.
Unfortunately, they don’t quite have the same elegance. Google’s attempt inspired the term ‘Glassholes’, and users of Toshiba’s dynaEdge glasses will see even bigger ridicule. The glasses come with a huge, bulky arm with a tiny display, attached to compact PC via USB-C.
As such, they aren’t augmented reality like Microsoft’s HoloLens. Instead, Toshiba considers it more ‘assisted reality’. In essence, you can expect a 4.1″ 640 x 360 Windows desktop hovering annoyingly in front of your face.
The Control Issue
Despite the huge arm, most of the power is in the mini dynaEdge PC that launched last year. The arm houses GPS, a compass, a gyroscope, a 5 MP camera, LED light, speaker, Microsoft, and ambient light sensor. The PC supports up to 16GB of RAM, 512 GB of storage, and an Intel Core M processor.
Its clear hardware will be no limitation, but the control issue is still there. Toshiba says the device can be controlled by a touch-sensitive pad on the arm or via voice. Either is not enough for a full productivity experience, but it could be intuitive enough to view documents in the field.
The device also supports video calling via Skype, which could be helpful to relay live feeds to co-workers or for support. Even so, it’s hard to imagine Toshiba’s glasses taking off in their current form. Though they weight just 0.2 ounces, reports say they’re uncomfortable, and businesses will have to pay $1,899 for that privilege.