AR Smart Caption Glasses Now Available at London’s National Theatre

London’s National Theatre has followed in the footsteps of Japan’s Shiki Theatre and launched augmented reality smart caption glasses for the hearing-impaired, developed in collaboration with its innovation partner, Accenture.

Image: National Theatre

Audience members will be able to use the service for any performance from any seat of any of the three National Theatre locations. This is made possible with Open Access Smart Capture technology, the result of an ongoing collaboration between the theatre’s technical team and speech and language experts led by Professor Andrew Lambourne of Leeds Beckett University.

The glasses display a synchronised transcript of dialogue and sound from the production directly onto the lenses of the glasses. Following a year of testing with hearing-impaired audiences, smart caption glasses are now available for current productions Hadestown and War Horse and from later this month for all new shows.