Skip to main content

Nreal Air proves that AR glasses don't have to be clunky monstrosities

Smart glasses are on the rise.

What you need to know

  • The Nreal Air AR sunglasses provide a full-vision virtual display for streaming content or playing mobile games.
  • They have a micro-OLED chip, 49 pixels-per-degree (PPD), and a 90Hz refresh rate.
  • It must be tethered to your iOS or Android phone to display content, but act as regular sunglasses otherwise, with a 77g/ 2.7oz weight.
  • Nreal Air will ship to Asian markets in late 2021, followed by "other markets" in 2022.

In early 2020, contributing editor Russell Holly tried out Nreal Light smart glasses and called them "the first set of Mixed Reality glasses actually worth buying." With them, you could use virtually any Android app in holographic form around your living room, or play 3D-native games on a tabletop. It wasn't perfect: it had to be tethered to your phone via USB-C, its field of view (FOV) was narrow, and its cameras were very blatantly visible — but it was a promising tool.

Now, Nreal is pushing out a new pair of AR sunglasses: the Nreal Air, which resolves some of its predecessor's aforementioned flaws. First and foremost, it looks and weighs much more like a regular pair of sunglasses that you could comfortably wear outside.

You might not think that's a big deal. After all, smart sunglasses like the Razer Anzu and Echo Frames look stylish enough. But these focus entirely on audio and smart assistants; there's no need to house a camera or fancy projection tech.

Most proper AR glasses are the size of the Hololens, which you wouldn't wear into a grocery store or to the beach. These are certainly heavier than regular glasses, but not uncomfortably so. They have "elastic temples that tightly hug the head" so they won't slip, and the "occlusive" lenses disguise the camera so it won't make people uncomfortable. You can even tilt the lenses into three separate positions to ensure the best viewing angle for apps.

Weighing just 2.7 ounces, the Nreal Air offers 49 pixels per degree and a 90Hz refresh rate. For comparison, the Hololens 2 hits just 47 pixels per degree and 60Hz. The difference is that the Hololens 2 is standalone, while the Nreal Air must still connect to your phone via USB-C (or Lightning) cable to display apps properly. But if you can accept the tether, it's much more natural to wear for long periods of time.

Nreal says the Air can project a 201-inch virtual display at a distance of 6 meters. That sounds impressive in theory; in practice, we're unclear whether the FOV is especially wide when viewing apps at a closer distance in smaller spaces.

"78% of our users use Nreal Light to watch streaming content," said Chi Xu, Founder of Nreal. Because of this, they're pitching the Nreal Air as a "portable movie theater" for those who want to watch content without relying on screens. We'll see how large the market is for commercial AR glasses soon, compared to other smart glasses like Facebook's Ray-Ban Stories.

The Nreal Air will first sell in Asia in December 2021, followed by other territories next year. We don't yet have a price, but Nreal claims it will "retail at a fraction of the price of Nreal Light," which cost $499 for a development kit.



Source: androidcentral

Popular posts from this blog

Twitter has hidden the chronological feed on iOS again – and I'm furious

In a controversial move, Twitter has brought back a feature that removes the 'Latest Tweets' view for users on iOS, which is something that many users, including me, hated back in March 2022 – and it's now rolling out. The first time the company decided to do this, 'Home' would appear first in a tab at the top, and there was no way of changing it so that 'Latest Tweets' would be the default view. It was reverted back after the company said it was a 'bug' for iOS users. This time though, it's no bug. Instead, it's 'For You' and 'Following' where you can only swipe between them now, which doesn't make much sense for a platform where you're using the platform to keep up to date with who you follow. It's a bizarre change that makes me ask – who wants this, especially during a time when its new owner, Elon Musk, is bringing in and reversing changes almost every week still? This one change will have big consequenc

This new Linux malware floods machines with cryptominers and DDoS bots

Cybersecurity researchers have spotted a new Linux malware downloader that targets poorly defended Linux servers with cryptocurrency miners and DDoS IRC bots. Researchers from ASEC discovered the attack after the Shell Script Compiler (SHC) used to create the downloader was uploaded to VirusTotal. Apparently, Korean users were the ones uploading the SHC, and it’s Korean users who are targets, as well. Further analysis has shown that the threat actors are going after poorly defended Linux servers, brute-forcing their way into administrator accounts over SSH.  Mining Monero Once they make their way in, they’ll either install a cryptocurrency miner, or a DDoS IRC bot. The miner being deployed is XMRig, arguably the most popular cryptocurrency miner among hackers. It uses the computing power of a victim's endpoints to generate Monero, a privacy-oriented cryptocurrency whose transactions are seemingly impossible to track, and whose users are allegedly impossible to identify. Fo

Port of Lisbon hit by ransomware attack

One of Europe’s busiest seaports, the Port of Lisbon, has been hit with a ransomware attack that knocked some of its digital systems offline. "All safety protocols and response measures provided for this type of occurrence were quickly activated, the situation being monitored by the National Cybersecurity Center and the Judicial Police," a statement shared by the Port of Lisbon Administration (APL) with local media earlier this week said. The incident failed to impact the port’s operations, but did take its official website, portodelisboa.pt, offline. LockBit taking responsibility "The Port of Lisbon Administration is working permanently and closely with all competent entities in order to guarantee the security of the systems and respective data," the statement concludes. While the company doesn’t explicitly say it was targeted with ransomware, the LockBit ransomware operator has added APL to its leaks website, taking responsibility for the hit.  The databas

Code-generating tools could be more of a security hindrance than help

New research by a group of Stanford-affiliated researchers has uncovered that code-generating AI tools such as Github Copilot can present more security risks than many users may realize. The study looked specifically at Codex, a product of OpenAI, of which Elon Musk is among the co-founders.  Codex powers the Microsoft-owned GitHub Copilot platform, which is designed to make coding easier and more accessible by translating natural language into code and suggesting changes based on contextual evidence. AI-coding problems Lead co-author of the study, Neil Perry, explains that “code-generating systems are currently not a replacement for human developers”. The study asked 47 developers of differing abilities to use Codex for security-related problems, using Python, JavaScript and C programming languages. It concluded that the participants who relied on Codex were more likely to write insecure code compared with a control group. Read more > These are the best laptops for progr