Mad Gaze is preparing to offer a new smart glasses product that has been named “Wave.” A video appended to the end of this article demonstrates the Wave smart glasses in operation. The smart glasses are illustrated in the figure below.
Before discussing the Wave smart glasses product, here are a few words to introduce the company. Mad Gaze is a mixed reality smart glasses company. It was founded by Tsim Sha Tsui in May, 2013 with headquarters in Hong Kong. The company’s first product, named Ares, was launched at the end of 2016. Since then, six augmented reality – mixed reality smart glasses products have followed. This includes both monocular and binocular smart glasses products as well as smart glasses that stand alone and smart glasses that operate in a hybrid mode. MAD Gaze’s customers include enterprise users, developers and consumers.
The company states that the Wave can be considered the next generation of their existing Glow Plus smart glasses product. There are a number of significant differences between Wave and Glow Plus. Principle among these is that Glow Plus utilized birdbath optics while Wave uses a Hybrid Waveguide Optical Display system. The optics of the Wave are illustrated in the figure below.
The see through optical system of the Wave is reported as lighter, thinner and to consume less power than the optics used in the Glow Plus.
A further distinction between the Glow Plus and the Wave are that the Wave has physical buttons to adjust brightness, volume and to turn on and off the 3D mode.
Several means are available to control the Wave smart glasses: smartphone, Mad Gaze watch, joystick, mobile trackpad, laser pointer, keyboard and voice.
Part of the means that allows Wave to provide an Extended Reality experience is the use of simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM).
Wave claims an ergonomic design that makes the smart glasses suitable for all-day wear. The design includes a customizable nose piece to ensure a comfortable fit and that reduces pressure on the user’s head. An additional reason the smart glasses are comfortable is that they are lite, weighing in at just 80 grams.
Other specifications and features of the Mad Gaze Wave smart glasses include the following:
- OLED display
- Resolution 4K HD 1920 x 1080 x 2
- Brightness 1800 nits
- Refresh rate 60 Hz
- Projects a 163 inch virtual screen
- FOV 40 degrees diagonal
- RGB camera 8 megapixels
- Built in stereo speakers x2. Includes a new circuit chip to form a higher dynamic range audio system. The speakers are located near the user’s ear canals so that high volume is not needed.
- Built in microphone
- Sensors: enhanced 9 axis accelerometer, magnetometer and gyroscope
Interchangeable lens frames are available and sold separately. The frames come in six colors: white, silver, black, violet, blue and rose gold. A protective pouch is included in the box along with the smart glasses. Four nose pieces are also included in the box. (One of the nose pieces is installed in the smart glasses.)
Wave directly supports Android smart phones through a USB-C DisplayPort. Wave can also be connected to other phones, tablets, PCs and game consoles via the Mad Gaze 3-in-1 adapter. More specifically, with the 3-in-1 adaptor, the glasses can support an iPhone as well as HDMI and Android OTG devices. (Note USB OTG or On-The-Go is a standardized specification that allows a device to read data from a USB device without requiring a PC.) In all cases, the Wave smart glasses will operate plug and play.
Wave supports multiple windows that allow the user to multi-task with a Bluetooth keyboard, joystick, trackpad, gyro laser pointer, smartwatch and more.
Users with eyesight from -1.5D to -10D can order prescription lenses in increments of -.25D on the Mad Gaze website. Alternately, the company can provide a corrective lens sample so that the user can buy the customized lenses from an optical shop of their choosing.
Wave supports a variety of Apps. Available apps can be accessed and downloaded from the Mad Store.
Mad Gaze Wave is based on an Android software development platform. The company is sponsoring a developers community which can be accessed here. After the start of smart glasses delivery, the company plans to release a free SDK and provide technical support. Developers are invited to launch their apps on the Mad Store.
Mad Gaze has chosen to partially fund the next stages of Wave development by use of a Kickstarter campaign that can be found here. The term partially seems particularly appropriate in that the all-or-nothing goal is $9,985. Clearly the Kickstarter campaign is being used less to raise funds and more to raise consciousness about the new product. In any case, at the time this article is written, $60,814 has been pledged by 162 backers. With this the case, the campaign should have funded on December 18, 2021.
The Wave will be priced from $299. Production of the smart glasses is expected to start in January, 2022 with shipments commencing in March, 2022. – Arthur Berman