Last month Lenovo successfully patented a heads up display (HUD) device designed to compete directly with Google Glass. We assumed the new product would draw at least some inspiration from Google when it hit the market, but a prototype unveiled on Thursday by Lenovo looks more like a near-perfect copy of Glass than anything else.
Lenovo’s new smart glasses doesn’t have an official name yet, and according to PCWorld it’s just a prototype. Still, the device unveiled earlier today looks extremely similar to Google Glass, packing the same basic design, the same camera placement and the same tiny screen that floats near the top of your vision. The only notable difference is the battery, which sits on the wearer’s neck. Lenovo says it should have more information to share by October, and we’re interested to see how Google reacts to the new device.
Lenovo also took the opportunity to announce a new platform for home automation gadgets and the “Internet of Things,” adding that it’s looking for partners to create everything from smart Wi-Fi routers to connected air purifiers. The platform, which Lenovo calls NBD, will offer support in the form of funding, hardware research and manufacturing to any firm with an innovative idea.
The company says its new products will target China, though Lenovo’s not ruling out an international expansion in the near future. The company also tapped Vuzix to bring its own smart glasses to the Chinese enterprise market. Lenovo’s HUD device will likely be limited to China at launch as well, though that doesn’t necessarily mean Google won’t take notice.