Google Glass has been the standard in smart eye wear so far, with few challengers living up to what Google Glass can do, but Baidu has come up with a new contender for the top spot in smart glasses with its Baidu Wear headgear.
Baidu has unveiled a working prototype to compete against Google Glass at the Baidu World conference earlier. The Eye’s main features are that it can recognize voice commands and is able to analyze and recognize objects within its side-camera’s field of view. It doesn’t have a screen or transmitter like the Google Glass, but it does look much more stylish. It also supports certain gestures to make accessing your voice control app easier. These gestures include “expanding to zoom” and “circling an object with your finger”.
The fact that Baidu Eye doesn’t have such an obvious design might not matter, though, because we already know that Google is planning a new Google Glass device which will have a much more public-friendly design people won’t notice at first. Nonetheless, Baidu’s Eye connects to the user’s smartphone and sends all the information it gathers to the app installed on the gadget.
The device is actually tailor-made for Baidu’s image search engine which is able to recognize and analyze images drawing information from its databases. That’s the technology Baidu Eye uses to help you navigate your surroundings and share content easily. The device uses both the side-camera on the right side of the device and the built-in earpiece on the left hand side of the Eye.
Baidu justifies its design by taking on Google Glass, saying that browsing images and objects is much easier than on the small screen Google Glass has to offer and saves a boatload of energy compared to what Glass uses to power its device. The Eye from the Chinese manufacturer will supposedly last up to two hours of recording, whilst Google Glass can only handle 45 minutes, at the moment. At the same time, the company has hinted at the fact that the display of Google Glass is damaging to the eye and has a tiring effect with prolonged use, as well impairing the user’s vision. The device can also be able to find products on e-commerce sites, as well, just by viewing them with its camera.
Baidu’s Eye is just in its prototype phase and the company hasn’t disclosed any release date or price, but they will have to hurry since Google Glass version 2 will probably be out in the first quarter of 2015, according to various rumors.
On a side-note, Baidu has also released a set of smart chopsticks dubbed Kuaisou in an effort to help people determine whether their food is safe to eat or not. The principle behind the chopsticks is cooking oil quality detection, since the oil is scarce in China and many shops use gutter oil recycled from garbage to cook their food. That’s where Kuaisou come in, being able to determine whether the oil one’s food is cooked in is fresh or has been recycled from who knows what. The process through which the device can achieve this has not been disclosed, and won’t be any time soon as it might be considered a trade secret if it’s something innovative. Nonetheless, the chopsticks would be a good addition to Chinese restaurant goers’ kitchenware.