Horrifically Ugly Sony SmartEyeGlass is Now Available For Pre-Order

SonySmartEyeGlass

When Google failed on its mission to bring expensive, unnecessary augmented reality eyewear to the masses in the form of Glass, it became clear that if that form of wearable tech was going to go anywhere in the future, a number of problems needed to be resolved. The first, and most damning, problem was that barely anyone wanted to actually be seen wearing a pair of them. If Google Glass had this issue even though its design wasn’t particularly awful, then Sony’s hideous SmartEyeGlass should expect to die a very swift death indeed.

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The SmartEyeGlass Developer Edition SED-E1 is available to pre-order right now, with an announced retail price of $840/£520, with it also coming to Germany and Japan for €670/JPY100,000. Business customers will also be able to pick them up in France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Sweden. 

Though they’re notably cheaper than the Glass, with the first limited batch of Google’s wearable tech having been sold for a whopping $1,500, they’re so intensely unattractive that it’s difficult to imagine anyone forking out that sum of money to get their hands on one. However, the grotesqueness of the SED-E1 is only one of its problems, another being that instead of boasting a full color display similar to the Glass, the wearable’s lenses relay information entirely in monochrome green.

Here’s a snapshot of what the display looks like in action:

SonySmartEyeGlassMonochrome

But it gets worse. With an estimated battery life of around two-and-a-half hours, the SmartEyeGlass doesn’t even have wireless capabilities, instead attaching to a circular disc in which its battery, microphone, speakers and touch controls are stored, essentially meaning that not only will you be stuck with these unsightly glasses on your face, you’ll also be forced to carry more hardware around in your pocket in order to use it.

It’s difficult to imagine who this device has been designed for. Though the Google Glass was twice the price, it was the epitome of what augmented reality eyewear can achieve right now, and it was still met with ambivalence. I can’t see many software creators looking to develop apps entirely in monochrome green for a device that is unlikely to garner any kind of reaction other than “yuck.”

Photo: Getty Images