While Google is seemingly cooling on the idea of releasing Google Glass as a full consumer product, Sony is pressing ahead with plans to get its augmented reality spectacles into the hands of developers and ultimately the public.

Sony SmartEyeglass is similar in concept to Google Glass in that it provides heads-up display information to a pair of dedicated glasses via a smartphone - currently Android. However, unlike Google's device, the Sony specs show heads-up information across the entire field of vision rather than in just one corner.

Pocket-lint first encountered a prototype version at the IFA consumer electronics trade show in Berlin in September last year and although it was rough and ready, the concept is sound.

READ: Watch out Google, Sony's coming at'cha with its SmartEyeGlass AR specs (hands-on)

At the time there was only one tech demo running, with the glasses displaying visible markers for locations in Berlin which you could turn your head to see. The developer release will hopefully result in a far greater array of applications.

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Sony has opened pre-orders for the Sony SmartEyeglass Developer Edition SED-E1, with units shipping in March. They are priced around £620 a pair and will be available in the UK, Germany, US and Japan. Enterprise customers in France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Netherlands and Sweden will also have access.

A separate device in the range, Sony SmartEyeglass Attach, was shown at CES in January but there is no word on a release for that model yet.