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CES 2019 : Day 4 – Smartglasses

by Steven Waltzer | Jan 11, 2019

Strategy Analytics Wearables Service brings you daily coverage of the year’s largest consumer electronics convention: CES 2019. Our day 4 blog will focus on smatglasses announcements from the show floor. 

Our day 1, day 2, and day 3 coverage can be accessed as below:

CES 2019: Day 1 - What to Expect in Wearables
CES 2019 : Day 2 - Smartwatches
CES 2019 : Day 3 – Feature Watches

Major announcements include:

  • Vuzix announced commercial availability of the Blade smartglasses at a retail price point of $999, markedly lower than the Magic Leap or Hololens, which are in the $2k-$3k range, but still quite expensive for a mass market device.The Vuzix Blade uses waveguide technology to project an image directly onto an etched area of the glass lens. When demoing the glasses I actually found the see through image quite distracting and difficult to get and keep in focus.We predict volumes will prove niche on the consumer side and that smartglasses overall will remain focused on the enterprise for at least 2 more years.
  • Kopin, a leading component supplier for smartglasses has announced their Golden-i Infinity AR Evaluation Program.The Golden-i Infinity is unique in that it is a tethered clip-on smartglasses product that uses the processing power from the connected smartphone (or tablet or PC) in order to keep the added weight on the user’s head to a minimum. Kopin has partnered with over a dozen Fortune 500 companies for the pilot program and roughly 100 companies in total. The device emphasizes voice and head gesture control to provide a hands free user experience that I found quite compelling during the demo. We expect Kopin will remain a leader in enterprise AR, as well as continuing to expand into consumer AR with products like their Solos cycling smartglasses.

Smartglasses sales are expected to remain modest and enterprise focused in the near term, with expected growth of 25% in 2018, albeit from a low base. Growth will be driven by developed markets, such as North America and Western Europe, largely in the areas of warehousing, manufacturing, and field service.

Exhibit 1: Vuzix  Blade Smartglasses

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