Augmented reality glasses imagined for the next generation of users
It’s no secret that Google Glasses were not the first attempt at an augmented reality wearable concept and they certainly will not be the last. In the time since Google presented its first wearable prototype in 2011, countless companies have followed suit with newer and increasingly more hyped products.
Meanwhile, AR’s sister technology, VR, was proving to be much more commercially viable, with consoles such as PS4 offering fun and addicting VR experiences. What’s more, in 2014 Facebook acquired Oculus VR for $2.3 billion and, more recently, has announced they’ll be selling the Oculus Go for as low as $199.
While VR may be in the lead currently, some recent factors are indicating that this lead may be short-lived. Motion and hand tracking technology seems to have finally reached a place to make augmented reality headsets commercially viable. A great example can be seen in the promise of Microsoft’s HoloLens 2, which has boundless implications (such as training and/or collaborating) in the industry sector.
A Wearable Design for the Everyday User
With the prospect of mixed and augmented reality wearables becoming less of a pipe dream, a question arises. How do we create a product that not only functions well, but also fits seamlessly into the user’s world? This is what I attempted to imagine with my Google wearable concept.
1. Researching Frames
The shape I wanted to end up with had to be one that would appear modern, yet appeal to a wide demographic. I started by researching on glasses sites such as Ray-Ban, Fendi, Warby Parker, and others. What I landed on was what I felt would be a modern variation of the wayfarer style.
After deciding on the style of frames I wanted to achieve, I began sketching and tracing in illustrator. I then brought the illustrator wireframes into Cinema 4D and began creating the mesh.
3. Adding the features
After modeling the frame style I was seeking to achieve, I then began the process of attempting to imagine where buttons and features would be located. This involved comparing the original Google Glass design, current wearable technology, and the current Google Pixel styling.
The Resulting Concept
After some iteration, I was finally left with a design that I felt closely resembled the current Google Pixel design system while offering something that the everyday user could imagine themselves wearing.
Detachable ear pieces would be magnetically connected to the main frames. In the ear pieces, bone conducting hearing devices would allow the user to hear audio without using headphones. A power button (identical to the one found on the Google Pixel) would allow the user to lock, power-on, or power-off the wearable. A touch ID sensor on the right ear piece would allow the user to unlock the device for use. Holographic images would be projected on the devices lenses, corrected for depth perception. Lastly, the user can choose from a variety of colors to make it their own.
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