Chinese NReal AR Glasses To Be Bundled With Samsung Galaxy Note20 And LG Velvet In South Korea
"The types of applications are limitless, and with South Korea a leader in 5G, there should be some very useful apps developed."
In January 2019, Beijing-based startup nReal were starting to get attention from the west after a successful showing augmented reality (AR) glasses at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
The glasses, named Light, appears to have achieved mainstream recognition, because starting today, the glasses will be sold in South Korea as an optional bundle package alongside both Samsung and LG’s newest smartphones through the carrier LG Uplus.
When nReal cofounder Chi Xu was interviewed, he said he developed his idea for the Light because he thought Microsoft’s Magic Leap was far too bulky and expensive ($3,000). It was noticeably lighter and smaller than the Magic Leap.
It’s these two traits that attracted the partnership with LG UPlus.
“We wanted to lower the barrier to the AR glass market with a realistic price and lightweight design” said Song Dae-won, executive vice president of LG UPlus’ device unit in a press release.
Consumers in South Korea can pick up a pair of nReal Light for 249,000 Korean won, or around $292, if they purchase a Samsung Galaxy Note 20 or LG Velvet through the carrier. This is a heavily subsidized price from the official $586 retail price.
The nReal Light is, essentially a pair of glasses with two 1080p screens attached to each spectacle, and together they pump out visuals that, when the glasses are worn properly, will be projected over real life field-of-view.
One key benefit of the nReal Light compared to other AR glasses is that the glasses can be plugged into a myriad of devices—including smartphones like the Galaxy Note 20 and LG Velvet.
For example, a user can plug the Light into a phone and scroll through Instagram as a digital overlay that “floats” over the real world, or watch YouTube videos. Software companies are free to build anything for the glasses and from my testing over a year ago, nReal demonstrated a Space Invader type game in which I had to move my head around to aim a crosshair to destroy incoming enemies.
The types of applications are limitless, and with South Korea a leader in 5G, there should be some very useful apps developed.