STUFFING AMAZON'S ALEXA into a pair of glasses it a bit of a jump form popping the virtual assistant into a speaker, but that's what smart glasses maker Vuzix has done.
According to a variety of reports coming out of CES 2018, Vuzix is adding Alexa into its Blade smart glasses which have been officially revealed at the gadget show and are apparently due to hit the market in the second quarter of this year for a cool $1,000.
The Vuzix Blade specs look a little like chunky retro-future sunglasses, the kind of things you'd expect the fashionistas of London's borough of Chelsea to attempt to pull off while snaffling Bellini cocktails as an oligarch's swanky digs.
But they contain a decent amount of tech that connects to a wearer's phone and effectively provides a wearable head-up display, a built-in camera, microphone and side-mounted touchpad to make the glasses a ‘smart' device.
While the smart glasses can react to voice commands and serve up all manner of information including navigation directions, they can also assist field engineers by providing hands-free instructions for jobs or help identify what may be wrong with a faulty circuit board, for example.
Adding Alexa's machine learning smart capabilities into the mix makes a lot of sense and could really turn the Blade specs into a device that is useful for both work and play, providing you can stomach wearing the nerd goggles out in public; that didn't work out so well for Google Glass.
Amazon is pushing for Alexa to be integrated into pretty much everything, from cars to fridges, thanks to providing developers with the tools to easily fit the virtual assistant into their devices.
And with the recent reveal of the Alexa Mobile Accessory Kit, Amazon is clearly aiming to get Alexa into more wearable and portable devices beyond smartphones.
Whether smart glasses can really take off remains to be seen, but at least Amazon in serving up the options to make such devices smarter with a virtual assistant. µ
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