Vuzix Wrap 920AR 3D augmented reality glasses hands-on

It is worth noting that, before we start, this specific iteration of Vuzix's Wrap 920 glasses is not intended for consumer use. Yes, they are available to anyone, but at £1499 a pop, it's unlikely that you'll be that interested.

Instead the Wrap 920AR glasses are for the development community, universities and the like. They allow the right people with the right ideas on how to advance augmented reality in a 3D space to practice what they preach. There are various demonstrative applications available for viewing through the headset, but the biggest draw that comes with them is the included devkit, and MAXimum3D plug in for Autodesk 3ds Max Design software.

That said, we were itching to have a go ourselves, even though we could never be called "developers" in a million years. And the demos on offer gave us a good glimpse at the potential of 3D augmented reality.

Previously, the only AR we'd seen was through an Android handset, with Mattel's Rock'Em Sock'Em Robots prototype, and although that was rendered in 3D, the display clearly wasn't.

Through the Vuzix headset, however, with its two side-by-side LCD screens - one for each eye - and twin front-mounted cameras, you get a greater sense of immersion, and a genuine 3D effect. The kit illustrates the potential of augmented reality in a far greater way.

Our demo of children's book, My Friend is an Alien, where renders of the characters pop out of the pages, was a prime example.

And with the company making overtures on the tech progressing to see-through glasses within the next 18 months, we felt like we were experiencing the start of something big.

There are, naturally, many hurdles yet to overcome, including price, but the company promises that demand will bring it crashing down. The more it makes, the cheaper it can sell them for.

Certainly, after the developers get cracking, there should even be plenty of content to view by then.

Are you excited by augmented reality? Let us know in the comments below...



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