Epson BT-30C: augmented reality glasses for smartphones at $ 500

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Tom Chatfield
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Summary

  • Epson BT-30C: a first step towards the democratization of augmented reality

Epson is one of the pioneers in the augmented reality glasses market. Its first model, the Moverio BT-100 glasses, was launched in 2011, before Google Glass or Microsoft HoloLens. Today, the firm unveils its new mount: the Moverio BT-30C.

These augmented reality glasses clearly don't look like ordinary glasses. Their design is imposing, and their weight still amounts to 95 grams. However, they are still significantly more practical than previous Epson products. Indeed, while previous models connected to an Android box, the BT-30C can be connected directly to a smartphone or to a Windows PC via USB-C.



However, it should be noted that this device is not not as technically advanced as the Microsoft HoloLens or the Magic Leap One. Thus, Epson's glasses do not allow realistic digital elements to be superimposed on the virtual world.

The idea is here display one or more screens in the user's field of vision, and allow him to control them using the smartphone. A maximum of three applications can be displayed on three different virtual screens. To switch from one to the other, the user only has to turn his head.

Epson BT-30C: a first step towards the democratization of augmented reality

The utility to the general public may seem limited, but Epson realizes it. For the Japanese company, theaugmented reality is not yet mainstream technology and will not be for three to five years. For the time being, the firm's products are therefore mainly intended for companies whose employees can use them to keep their hands free while using computers.


Nevertheless, this new model is a first step towards democratization. Epson presents the BT-30C as an ideal device for individuals who want to take advantage of a portable and private screen to view content from their smartphones and PCs. In addition, with a price of 499 dollars, these AR glasses remain more affordable than previous models like the BT-300 priced at 699 dollars.



While waiting for the augmented reality glasses from Apple and those from Facebook, the BT-30C are therefore a gateway to augmented reality for the general public. These AR glasses will be available during the month of June 2019...



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