Just over a week after Google's spectacular demonstration of its Project Glass headset at Google I/O, Japanese camera maker Olympus is jumping back into the wearable computing game, announcing a new prototype of a glasses-mounted heads-up display. Dubbed MEG4.0, the display features Bluetooth connectivity for interfacing with smartphones and uses Olympus' own "proprietary optical technology" to maximize the visibility of the outside world. Unlike Project Glass, however, Olympus' device doesn't appear to include a camera — an odd choice for a company built on imaging products.
According to the Japanese press release for the MEG4.0, the device features a QVGA (320 x 240) display and up to eight hours of battery life in "intermittent display" mode, switching on for approximately 15 seconds every three minutes. It also contains a built-in accelerometer, allowing it to detect the position of the user's head and react accordingly.
This is not the first time that Olympus has experimented with head-mounted displays — the company has been working on prototypes since at least 2005. But the timing is certainly significant, coming just as the technology finally seems set to make it to consumers (or at least Google developers) at sub-astronomical prices.