Smart glasses maker North showed off the prototype of its follow-up to last year’s Focals smart glasses at CES2020 in Las Vegas this month.
The Focals 2.0 look to improve upon last year’s release in a number of ways, and reducing the size of the glasses is one of them. The second generation pair is significantly slimmer, and look more like a regular pair of glasses than the original edition.
By making them smaller, North was also able to make the Focals 2.0 lighter as well. These changes in form factor alone could go a long way in helping make these glasses a commercial success, as the form factor and appearance of smart glasses technology has been something most manufacturers have struggled with in achieving mainstream success in the wearables market.
Another major improvement over the first generation model is the larger, higher resolution ‘eye box’ — basically the smart glasses display area — found on the Focals 2.0. Specific numbers haven’t been provided by North as of yet, however it did say that the resolution has been increased by 7.5x, while the eye box has been increased by 20x. It’s also no longer necessary for each individual wearer to have their face measured before using the glasses in order to use the Focals 2.0, as the improvements made to the eye box solve this problem as well.
Reviewers from Cnet who had access to the glasses also reported improved graphics and sharper resolution than the previous generation, with the display capable of more complex AR and VR 3D imagery.
Smart glasses have yet to gain mainstream success with consumers, as many consider the technology to still be in its early stages. Google tried to market its Google Glass attempt at consumers before deciding 2017 to only focus on enterprise use cases.
The Focals 2.0 are still considered a prototype, and North has yet to reveal any new information about if and when they may become available for purchase.