Outside the Verge CES trailer this afternoon, I wore a sleek headset with a heads-up display right out of Iron Man. It's called the Seer, and it's a prototype augmented reality visor designed by a young hardware startup called Caputer Labs. Unlike other headsets on display this year, however, this interface runs entirely off a smartphone.
For the headset to work, all you need to do is slip a smartphone into the slot and fasten it in place. The display gets reflected onto the one-way visor, letting you see the HUD mapped over your surroundings.
Caputer boasts that users will have upwards of a 100-degree field of vision, making for a more immersive experience. Plus, the app can detect your head movements so the interface pans depending on where you're looking. There's even a "mouse" cursor that appears in the center, and you can select objects in your path by clenching your jaw.
Seer is a fun dream, but it needs a lot of work
Unfortunately, the Seer is still very much a prototype. The headset I wore was a rough 3D-printed model, and the interface had trouble reading my movements and selections. It's also fairly clear Caputer chose the Iron Man because it sounds cool as opposed to it being immediately intuitive. But why not? The company plans on launching a Kickstarter for the Seer later this month and hopes to launch the device later this year, envisioning their technology being applied in engineering and medicine. For now, the dream is enough.