Hands-On With The CastAR HD Prototype
While Technical Illusions didn’t have a booth on the floor at CES 2014, the company was holding private meetings to show off its new HD glasses prototype. Only completed four days before the show, it was still very much engineering in the raw, hot glue gun warts and all. It also lacked many of the features added during the Kickstarter campaign, such as positional audio and gyroscopic tracking.
We were able to meet with Jeri and Rick, go hands-on with the HD glasses, and even interview them about the technology we were experiencing for the first time.
We also got to see the first milestone in miniaturizing the castAR’s electronics, going from a big control box to a little two-chip circuit board.
The Original CastAR Control Box
The next step is to shrink it again before the company delivers its first 70 to 80 developer units, of which we were shown a mock-up. Technical Illusions then plans to refine the glasses before shipping out Kickstarter units in 2014, followed by final commercial units in 2015.
New Two-Chip CastAR Control Board
So now you know how the castAR glasses were developed, but we still haven’t explained how they work or how they differ from other AR glasses, such as Meta’s Pro and Google Glass. It's difficult to describe in words or demonstrate through video what using castAR is actually like. However, you can at least watch Marcus trying them out.
We did our best to show what Marcus was seeing by videoing the laptop screen driving the glasses. Naturally, that doesn't capture what it's like to try them on. The only way to truly experience castAR is to don the technology yourself. Technical Illusions' Kickstarter video comes as close as you're going to get.