Wearing a computer on your face sounded like a futuristic sci-fi fantasy, right up there with flying vehicles. While flying cars are still out of reach for most mortals, so-called smart glasses have already arrived.
Smart glasses are essentially computer spectacles that may be worn and used in various ways, depending on the type and purpose.
Some models, such as Google Glass, can project and superimpose information on users’ field of view via a transparent heads-up display or an augmented reality overlay. Others can take photos and videos, use bone-conduction technology to listen to music, connect to social media, and use virtual assistants. Smart glasses can also use hands-free voice commands, touch buttons, or both, depending on the device.
Smart glasses, on the other hand, are a relatively recent technology. It can be challenging to figure out which pair of wearable computers is right for you if you’re new to the concept of wearable computers. Alternatively, they could be ideal for someone you care about, just like the best tech presents. So we’ve put together a list of the five best smart glasses on the market right now, so you can multitask like a pro in no time!
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What are smart glasses?
Smart glasses, similar to smartwatches, are wearable gadgets that integrate networking and telephone features into eyeglasses. Smart glasses allow users to perform everything from making phone calls to taking photos with only a tap or voice instructions, all while remaining hands-free. These were initially proposed in 2013. The Google Glass Explorer was the first smart glasses to hit the market during the heyday of wireless wearables. Unfortunately, after only 18 months on the market, the Explorer was phased out due to its discomfort and high cost.
Fortunately, there are a plethora of brands that offer smart glasses these days. Although no two glasses are alike, they share functions like audio, Bluetooth connectivity, and even control over personal assistants. Smart glasses are still a relatively new concept compared to other wearables, so there’s a lot of space to improve over time.
Everyone may wear these smart glasses, and unlike VR headsets, they are safe to wear outside. Instead of prescription lenses, most smart glasses on the market are considered accessories. Prescription smart glasses are also available. However, they are less common. However, you should conduct some preliminary research to see whether smart glasses provide possibilities for those who require prescription lenses. Smart glasses are for anyone who wants to experience hands-free calls and converse with their digital assistants.
How do these smart glasses work?
Ever since the launching of Google Glass Explorer, numerous companies have produced their own smart glasses. Although the technology for the glasses is not yet flawless, numerous firms are working to improve it. This ensures that their customers have the best possible experience with their smart glasses.
But, exactly, how do these glasses function? Here’s how these wearables work:
The majority of smart glasses will contain a built-in CPU that will allow everything else to work. Since this CPU is usually on one arm of the glasses’ ear rest, most smart glasses are heavy. The ear rest also has speakers for audio and cellular reception. Audio can be sent to the ear via bone conduction technology.
Microphones for smart glasses will be hidden behind one of the hinges. For the most part, mini speakers for notifications and music are linked with microphones.
Some glasses will include cameras, while others will have projectors that show digital displays, depending on the model. While these two features aren’t as standard as others, a few smart glasses allow users to take images and videos as well as project displays without blocking their view of the actual world.
Best Smart Glasses: Brief reviews and recommendations
1. Ray-Ban Stories
Ray-Ban Stories is a collaboration between the eyewear brand and Facebook, the social media behemoth, that promises to create a new method to capture and share adventures. These smart glasses combine the classic frames we’ve all enjoyed over the years with a slew of social capabilities.
Ray-Ban Stories, one of the best smart glasses, contains all of the standard functions found in smart glasses. You can use it to play, pause, and control music. It also has open-ear speakers and built-in microphones, allowing you to answer calls. With this pair of smart glasses, the ability to record and share photographs and videos, as well as the motto “Capture, Share, and Listen,” is the real thing.
Ray-Ban Stories features two auto-adjusting 5MP cameras for taking hands-free images and films. Its memory capacity allows you to shoot roughly 500 photographs as well as several 15-second movies to upload on Facebook. To do so, you’ll need to get Facebook View, Ray-Ban Stories’ content-sharing partner.
- Comfortable and lightweight
- Prescription lenses available
- Brain-sensing technology
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Social Integration
2. Bose Frames Alto
The Bose Frames Alto is a stylish open-ear headphone that goes with practically any outfit. It has Bluetooth capability, allowing you to listen to your favourite music. You may even use the glasses to make phone calls without pulling your phone out of your pocket. These sunglasses also protect your eyes from UV rays by blocking up to 99 per cent of them.
You can anticipate the highest audio quality for streaming because these glasses are from Bose. Due to the open-ear speakers, you can hear phone conversations but be prepared for ambient noise.
If you’re an audiophile, the Bose Frames AltoRead is a terrific smart glasses to consider. It has the excellent audio quality and lets you use your virtual assistant and make phone calls anytime and wherever you want.
- UV protection
- Bluetooth control
- Built-in microphone
- It only comes in two styles
- Subpar battery life
3. Amazon Echo Frames (gen 2)
One of the best smart glasses today is the Amazon Echo Frames. Not only does it support Alexa, but it also allows you to listen to your favourite rhythms while receiving notifications from your phone directly into your ear. As part of their open-ear audio design, the glasses incorporate tiny speakers. As a result, you will be able to hear audio through the glasses, but those around you will not. You can also choose to ignore the notifications that appear on your glasses. Only alerts from a selected list of persons in the smart glasses will be received using “VIP Filter.”
The Amazon Echo Frames may last up to 14 hours on a single charge. Continuous engagement with Alexa and hours of continuous playback can quickly deplete the battery, so use them sparingly, especially if you’re out of the house. If you don’t want the ambient microphone to be on all the time, you may also turn it off because it drains the battery.
What we appreciate about the Amazon Echo Frames is that they seem like regular glasses, so you won’t look like a nerd if you wear them. It also comes in a variety of colours to suit your preferences.
- Built-in Alexa control
- VIP Filter for notifications
- Automatic volume adjustments
- Ambient microphone
- Battery drains out quickly
4. Lucyd Lyte
The Lucyd Lyte smart glasses are ideal for outdoor activities since they allow you to hear everything that is going on around you. You can use your digital assistant with these glasses, make phone calls and receive notifications. It’s also compatible with a variety of devices, including phones, laptops, and smartwatches.
The fact that these glasses are sunglasses rather than regular glasses is an exciting feature. As a result, they’re better suited for outdoor activities. They have UV protection built in to keep your eyes safe. However, the glasses may be uncomfortably tight on the face, and long-term use is not recommended.
Since it has a noise-cancelling microphone, the Lucyd Lyte Round is a beautiful pair of smart glasses for calls. However, it would be best if you kept your level low because excessive volume can cause noise to escape through the sunglasses. Regardless, this is a beautiful set to consider if you’re searching for smart glasses you can wear outside the house. It’s available in various frame styles and stylish lens tints that Gen Z will adore.
- Support for digital assistants
- Great audio for calls
- Good microphone quality
- It can be too snug on the face
- No wireless charging
- Sound leakage at loud volumes
- Slightly heavier than most sunglasses
5. OhO Bluetooth Sunglasses
If you’re looking for smart glasses on a budget, the OhO Bluetooth Sunglasses are a good option. These glasses perform the same basic functions regardless of the cost as other smart glasses. This pair boasts a fashionable style, UV protection, and high-quality sound.
You may listen to music and make phone calls right from your glasses. This pair also allows you to connect with Siri, Alexa, and other virtual assistants through your smart assistant. Due to their waterproof design, the sunglasses are also approved for outdoor use.
Despite their low price, the OhO Bluetooth Sunglasses are a pair that is simple to use and functional. The best aspect is that you don’t have to worry about getting the smart glasses wet or soiled because they aren’t expensive.
- Open-ear speakers
- Control of digital assistants
- Built-in microphone
- Receive and make phone calls
- Polarised lenses for UV protection
- Subpar battery performance
- No wireless charging
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6. Vue Lite
Vue Lite takes the cake for keeping things simple while being functional in design. These are the ones that most closely resemble regular glasses out of all the others on this list. Orion, in particular, has a variety of frames that give the spectacles a touch of personality and class.
Above and beyond their aesthetics, these glasses have numerous features that make them an excellent choice for anyone wishing to improve their lenses. You may use the Vue Lite 2 to listen to music, answer phones, make calls, and operate your voice assistants. It’s also water and sweat-resistant, making it a fantastic pair to wear daily. You won’t need to download any apps to utilise the glasses; simply pair them with your phone over Bluetooth, and you’re ready to go.
Vue Lite 2 is an excellent pair of smart glasses because it blends function, comfort, and design into a single package. Remember that wearing these glasses for an extended period may cause discomfort, so take them off now and then.
- Decent battery life
- Appealing design
- It comes with prescription lenses
- Subpar audio quality
- Discomfort with extended wear
- Sound leakage
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Choosing the best pair of smart glasses may be difficult given that all of the devices on this list offer such a diverse range of functionality. These are indeed t fantastic accessories to have. They safeguard your eyes and give you hands-free options for operating your phone or communicating with your digital assistant. However, weighing your options is vital before settling on the perfect pair. It’s critical to examine your demands and budget before choosing smart glasses. Overall, these glasses are excellent but aren’t required, and most people can get by without them. On the other hand, smart glasses might be your next favourite device if you wish to have hands-free controls.
However, our overall winner, the top-rated Echo Frames, photo and video-taking capabilities are fantastic. These are the best smart glasses and audio frames, including Ray-Ban and Bose, for everything from open-ear sound to camera and video recording. However, the Bose Frames are unbeatable if you’re searching for more fundamental capabilities, such as music listening.