GogglePal – Augmented reality for the Ski Slopes

GogglePal May 2015 3

Augmented reality glasses for sports have been on the market for quite some time and already have their share of market success. When it comes to skiing, Recon Instruments was the first and is still the leader. A position that GogglePal wants to fill by offering an alternative form of AR device aimed at snow sports.

GogglePal is a companion device that attaches to any existing ski goggles via a magnet. The device is of the see through type and looks very similar to Google Glass optical end. In this case, the projection unit is attached to a control unit via a short cable so that it can be attached to the goggle’s strap. The system has been tested as a prototype and the current model weighs around 2 oz (58g).

According to GogglePal, the device has a wide range of operating temperatures, as can be expected for a device used in snow. It also says that it uses an OLED display as image source, but did not release the resolution for now.

The system supports iOS and connects via Bluetooth to the users’ devices.

GogglePal May 2015 2

The real innovation is in the attachment type. The company uses a magnet to attach the projection unit, which allows it to position the unit in basically every goggle lens and at the users’ preference.

The device comes in different types, Sport, Connect, Play and Play Gold. The different versions offer the following basic functions:

  • Speed
  • Vertical drop
  • Acceleration
  • Air time
  • Rotation
  • Calories burned
  • HUD message notification

This also describes the function of the Sport version. Connect adds HUD navigation, Play adds HUD navigation and a treasure hunt game. Play Gold has the same functions as the Play version but comes in a gold color. This is a very detailed road map for a device that will not go into production before mid-2015 and is supposed to ship by the beginning of 2016 to the customers.

GogglePal has just started a Kickstarter campaign and has achieved a total of around $28,000 (goal of $40,000) with 26 days to go.

The company has already created a video that shows the functionality very well.

Analyst Comment

It is difficult to judge how much of this functionality will actually look anything like the video suggests. There is no mention of field of vision, and from the size of the optical combiner one would not expect that it covers a large part of the vision field. Also, since the projection unit is attached by the user it can be located in different places on the goggles, making it difficult to provide location based feedback as required by navigation and gaming. At least it would require some form of synchronizing procedure before usage. – NH