Baidu, a leading Chinese search engine has decided to follow the global search engine’s footsteps. The company is producing a Google Glass-like eyewear and has decide to name it Baidu Eye.
The company demonstrated a working prototype on September 3 at its annual Technology Innovation Conference in Beijing. Baidu’s new wearable connects to a smartphone, recognizes voice and gesture commands (like expanding to zoom, or circling an object in your field of view with your finger). The device has an in-built earpiece and camera. It is designed to support image search.
However, unlike Google Glass, Baidu Eye lacks a screen and touch pad. Instead, the device uses a camera to scan objects, and focuses on analyzing information around its user and beaming that to a smartphone.
Defending Baidu Eye, the company’s director of international communications, Kaiser Kuo told Tech in Asia, ” We found that screens impair vision and tire your eyes easily. Instead, we tether it to a smartphone app, so you can receive information on your phone screen (or your tablet, or another device) which is larger and easier to browse on than a small, head-mounted screen. It also uses much less energy, and the battery lasts much longer. Its design is very light in the front, and of course people who wear eyeglasses can use it easily.”
Baidu is planning to integrate Eye with social networks, gaming sites, as well as offer hands-free activities like taking photos and videos or answering calls.
Baidu Eye is still in its early stages and the company is still working with several manufacturers to bring it to market. No word yet on its expected price or availability.