Bosch Sensortec, a Plymouth-based developer of sensors for use in consumer goods, drones and robots, is unveiling its Smartglasses Light Drive module at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas Jan. 7-10.
The module is a sole source, all-in-one technology stack consisting of MEMS (microelectromechanical system) mirrors, optical elements, sensors, and onboard processing. This integrated solution delivers a clean visual experience with bright images that are always in focus – even in direct sunlight, according to Bosch.
The Smartglasses Light Drive Module, expected to be available to high-volume smaratglasses manufacturers in 2021, marks the first time Bosch Sensortec integrated the Bosch Light Drive technology in the system. The company says this development has the potential to revolutionize all-day wearables with perceived total transparency for the user, and with social acceptance because it is nearly invisible to others. Additionally, the technology also can be applied to optimize performance of waveguide systems for which integration packages are in development.
“The Smartglasses Light Drive system is the smallest and lightest product on the market today and is, therefore, able to turn almost any regular spectacles into smartglasses,” says Stefan Finkbeiner, CEO of Bosch Sensortec. “By eliminating distracting phone usage, smartglasses can help improve driving safety and reduce the impulse of users to constantly check their mobile devices for notifications or messages.”
The module’s smaller size allows designers to overcome the bulky, cumbersome characteristics of many of today’s smartglasses. For the first time, a turnkey system enables smaller, lighter, more stylish smartglasses designs that meet the visual and comfort needs of everyone. The tiny module is also big news for those who wear eyeglasses for vision correction – a significant market, since six out of 10 people use corrective lenses every day.
The system, Bosch says, displays the perfect balance of just-in-time hands-free information in a minimalist format, making it ideal for applications including navigation, calls, and notifications such as alarms, calendar reminders, and messaging platforms such. Everyday note-based information like to-do and shopping checklists are possible.
To date, these applications have been primarily restricted to devices with physical displays like smartphones or smartwatches. Smartglasses minimize socially unacceptable behavior such as obsessive phone checking, and help improve driver safety by providing hands-free, transparent heads-up navigation directions. The new technology promises to broaden the scope and availability of apps and information, coupled with instant access to relevant data, social media, and intuitive control of audio playback.