Oakley are planning on entering into the smart glasses business, targeting Google Glass and Vuzix M100 in the process. The eye wear company has stated their intention to expand business with their Disruptive by Design brand, signalling their intent for the future.
The company has underlined three key innovative pillars, Enhanced Vision, Digital Eyewear and Customization. Oakley claim that Disruptive by Design is “laying down a foundation for the future” with their legacy and culture being celebrated. The digital eyewear which the company are working towards would enter the market as direct rivals to Google Glass and Vuzix.
Oakley confirmed that they have as many as 1000 patents pending, 200 of which have been designed and filed over the past 2 years. The Disruptive by Design brand platform was unveiled at Oakley’s global event, confirming that advertising will start in March 2014 with Wired as partners.
Whilst Oakley did not provide an abundance of details on these upcoming smart glasses, they did show off how their innovative products had been helping professional athletes redefine the face of sport. The company’s designers and engineers lent an insight into Oakley’s research and development methods during the presentation.
Google Glass is still being tested by small groups of ‘explorers’ whilst Vuzix already has their M100 smart glasses out on the market. These devices are not cheap, costing $1500 and $1000 respectively. Oakley need to strike a fine balance between quality and affordability if they are to revolutionize digital eyewear in the future, or they will price consumers out of the brand.
Will smart glasses catch on in the next few years and become as common as smartphones?