Keep Your eYes on Your Drone

Camera - - WHAT’S NEW -

You’ll bEST kNoW Ep­son for its ex­cel­lent range of photo print­ers, but the com­pany has a lot of fin­gers in a lot of pies (in­clud­ing mak­ing EVF screens). One of the more in­ter­est­ing non-printer Ep­son prod­ucts is its Move­rio high-def­i­ni­tion ‘smart glasses’ which are grad­u­ally find­ing a range of ap­pli­ca­tions in in­dus­try, science and tourism.

The lat­est gen­er­a­tion Move­rio BT-300 model has re­cently been in­tro­duced and is more com­pact, lighter in weight and more so­phis­ti­cated than pre­vi­ous mod­els. Un­like con­ven­tional VR gog­gles, the Move­rio glasses are trans­par­ent so you’re still in touch with the real world while dis­plays are be­ing gen­er­ated on the in­side of the lenses. Ep­son is call­ing them “aug­mented re­al­ity” smart glasses.

Our in­ter­est in the Move­rio smart glasses is their use­ful­ness for fly­ing a cam­era drone, where there’s a le­gal re­quire­ment in Aus­tralia that the air­craft be kept in sight all the time. Ob­vi­ously you can’t do this with con­ven­tional VR gog­gles. With the Move­rio glasses you can watch the drone and also see what its cam­era is see­ing via two sil­i­con­based back­lit OLED pro­jec­tion dis­plays. Wire­less con­nec­tiv­ity is via WiFi or Blue­tooth and there’s a built-in mem­ory card slot for mi­croSD de­vices which sup­ple­ments 16 GB of on­board stor­age.

Ep­son’s Move­rio smart­glasses are pow­ered by a quad-core In­tel Atom X5 processor run­ning An­droid 5.1 which en­ables ef­fi­cient ren­der­ing of com­plex 3D con­tent. An up­graded five megapix­els front-fac­ing cam­era and on-board sen­sors (in­clud­ing a GPS re­ceiver) en­able the Move­rio BT300 to more pre­cisely de­ter­mine the lo­ca­tion of ob­jects in the real world. The Si-OLED pro­jec­tion sys­tem can then seam­lessly ren­der and lock 3D con­tent to these ob­jects, with no dis­play back­ground or edges in the field-of-view. The tran­si­tion from LCD back­lit pro­jec­tion to Si-OLED in the BT300 en­ables higher con­trast lev­els, a wider colour gamut and en­hanced dis­play trans­parency. Be­ing much lighter than most drone-fly­ing head­sets or gog­gles, the BT-300 is more com­fort­able to wear for longer pe­ri­ods of time… in fact, not much dif­fer­ent from a nor­mal pair of glasses. The Si-OLED dis­plays are very crisp and clear, but more im­por­tantly it’s now a lot eas­ier to shift your fo­cus from here to the longer dis­tances and back with­out get­ting tired eyes. The ca­ble-con­nected con­troller uses a track­pad for more ef­fi­cient nav­i­ga­tion and a recharge­able bat­tery pack gives up to six hours of op­er­a­tion… which, of course, far ex­ceeds the range of any cam­era drone.

Ep­son’s Move­rio BT-300 smart glasses are priced at $1199 which isn’t cheap, but prob­a­bly jus­ti­fi­able if you do a lot a drone fly­ing. For more in­for­ma­tion visit www.ep­son.com.au

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