Bose Reveals AR Audio Platform

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Bose has announced a pair of augmented reality-based smart glasses but the company is taking a different direction

Augmented reality has mostly always been thought of visual overlays wherein the virtual can be superimposed on the real with the help of AR headsets of glasses. The company has demonstrated a 3D printed prototype that can provide audio information about local points of interest, and expects to launch the Bose AR product this summer.

Bose is developing augmented reality sunglasses, the company made a surprise announcement late last week. We have seen AR Glasses from the likes of Google in the past that have not succeeded as they raised security and privacy issues. The company said it is collaborating with academic research institutes, including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab and the New York University Future Reality Lab, developers and manufacturers such as ASICS Studio, Starva, TripAdvisor, and Yelp, among other partners.

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A new AR sunglasses prototype from audio specialist Bose might not be as high-tech as Google Glass, but it's certainly a lot more discreet. A new technology developed for the glasses ensures that the audio is audible only to the listener wearing the glasses, and the acoustic packages fit inside the arms of the glasses. Think of sunglasses that work like Bose headphones and that's what Bose AR is all about. Dubbed Bose AR, the platform does not change what a user is looking at, but thanks does know what a user is looking at.

The augmented reality glasses are able to accurately know what they are looking at using a combination of motion sensors and Global Positioning System tracking.

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"It places audio in your surroundings, not digital images, so you can focus on the incredible world around you rather than a tiny display", Bose's John Gordon said at the product unveiling.

Developers interested in the Bose AR platform can sign-up for more information and the Bose AR SDK over on Bose's developer site. One example that was explained was that when you are looking at a historical monument, the company said that you might hear a speech from a famous person, or sounds that mimic the historical event. "It places audio in your surroundings, not digital images, so you can focus on the fantastic world around you rather than a tiny display". "It knows which way you are facing and can instantly connect that place and time with endless possibilities for travel, learning, music and more".

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