Displays Video

Avegant Glyph transforms from headphone to head-mounted theater

editors-choiceThe Premise. Since the inception of personal devices, there’s been a consistent battle to have the best graphics possible. As screens get smaller and closer to the eye, this has been quite the significant challenge to overcome. No product has been able to come out the definite victor, and they continue to strive for a completely immersive experience.

The Product. The Avegant Glyph combines high-quality audio with image quality unlike traditional displays. The flip-down headband provides a vibrant display by projecting the images directly onto the retina. The end result is a powerful combination of audio and visual entertainment with extensive potential. According to Avegant, they want the Glyph to be a universal device that can allow for 360 degree immersion, making phone calls, and seeing ultraviolet and infrared signatures in real time. It can work with most devices by using a simple HDMI cable, so it can be integrated with almost all your current devices.

The Pitch. Yobie Benjamin, the COO of Avegant, summed up the austerity of the Glyph pretty well. “It’s not about just building a better product. It’s actually about building a platform that nobody’s ever seen.” The video shows how simple the Glyph is: flip down the headband, and be immersed in an entirely new world. But the video really focuses on where it hopes developers will take the product and use it in ways previously unimagined. After demonstrating the Glyph at CES, Avegant hopes to bring the Glyph to consumers by the end of the year.

The Perks. $499. That’s all it takes to have this prototypical combination of crisp audio and stunning visuals in your hands. A pair of high quality headphones will set you back $300-$400 dollars, so it’s completely reasonable that the Glyph would be $499. It will take until December 2014 for it to ship, but the opportunity to be among the first to try out this new personal device it well worth the wait.

The Potential. The Glyph’s micromirror system helps avoid issues plaguing other virtual reality headsets and the flip-down headband/visor helps avoid some of the stigma often incurred with other VR headsets. While its profile is still chunky, Avegant claims that the functional beta shipping to backers will have smaller headphone cups. It may not be enough to make HMDs  mainstream. However it wouldn’t be surprising to see increased use in public places such as planes.

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