Three months ago, Lenovo launched its internet-based business platform New Business Development (NBD) together with the first wave of four smart devices: two smart glasses, a smart air cleaner and a smart router. For the smart glasses product line, the company revealed the details and prototype for M100, the smart glasses targeted at industry users, but left New Glass, the commercial version, relatively unclear.
The Chinese laptop and smartphone maker later demonstrated New Glass at the annual gala of crowdfunding reality TV show The Makers on October 19, to offer insights into the gadget.
New Glass is specifically designed for Chinese consumers in collaboration with Ceyes (or Yunshizhitong). The product comes with a detachable module with a battery attached at user’s necks via a cable. The device runs on Android and has a single display that sits just in front of your right eye. Unlike most smart glasses on the market, the upper part of the glasses do not include the spectacle frame. They can be clipped to users’ glasses, thus avoiding the inconvenience of adapting to new frames, explained Bai Jie, head of Lenovo’s smart glasses project.
Loaded with Chinese-language operating system, the device boasts a 8MP camera and a 1300mAh battery that can give a full day of life when synced to your phone. New Glass can be controlled via smartphone or voice, while Bai disclosed the company is developing a smart ring that can be used to control the glasses. Bai also said the price tag of this device will be on par with that for a medium-or high-end smartphone.
The M100 has gone on sale to industry developers for RMB8,000 (US$1,298), which includes software support. Bai said the its current users mainly fall into three categories: system developers, techies and games developers.
China’s smart glasses industry is getting more and more players. Google Glass, the pioneer of in this field, is ready to explore the Chinese market and domestic internet giant Baidu just released Baidu Eye. Though it’s still an emerging industry, having further players will help familiarise users as they bid to create a more mature market, according to Bai.
In addition to the NBD program, Lenovo recently announced that it will establish an internet-focused smart device company next year to tap the fast-growing consumer mobile device market in China.