Wearable Tech World Feature Article
February 04, 2015

Vuzix and HeadApp Combine For a High-Flying Event

The Vuzix M100 Smart Glasses have sometimes been regarded as one of the biggest things in the field of wearable tech, which is itself just getting started. But Vuzix, according to current reports, has some clear plans to fly high right out of the gate, thanks to a new partnership between itself and HeadApp, a combination of which will be seen at an upcoming event to show off just what the M100 Smart Glasses can do.

The partnership in question will create what's known as the Glass4Flight application, which connects an integrated system known as WiFly to pilots. With WiFly, pilots get immediate access to a host of real time data points together in one handy package known as the Virtual Glass Cockpit. The Virtual Glass Cockpit creates a whole new breed of user experience for pilots, and allows for ready access to all that important material a pilot needs, including things like route information, heading, speed and altitude, among a host of others. Plus, all that information can be had on a hands-free basis, allowing the hands to remain on the controls, as should be the case anyway.

The app will be available for purchase starting April 15 at the AERO2015 Expo in Turin, Italy, and to help bolster the app's release, reports suggest that 15 planes will be equipped with the app to show just what it can do. Vuzix's president and CEO, Paul Travers, offered up some comment around the release, saying “Vuzix isn't new to the aviation industry, but this is the first time that we looked at a project with the pilot in mind as opposed to engineers and airline crew. We have worked closely with HeadApp with a focus towards the private aviator. What we have seen so far has been quite eye opening and the potential for our M100 with regard for the pilot program gives us a lot of possibilities. During the further testing phases, we will look at new opportunities to embark on.”

Indeed, something like this could be particularly valuable for a pilot, but there's another point that may not be immediately considered; could something like this be valuable for passengers as well? Imagine an airline flight in which Vuzix M100 glasses or the like are available at individual seats. Now, imagine the ability to change channels to the cockpit view, and see all the same flight data and the like that the pilot is seeing, in flight. That could be particularly interesting for some users. Better yet, why stop there? Connect to a camera in the belly of the plane, and let people see the ground roll by below, or connect to a camera on the top of the plane and see the aerial view as the plane progresses at hundreds of miles per hour. This could be a real value-add for airlines, who are likely eager to get some of those in being as the entire industry's being demonized for its high prices and difficulty getting through security. Having a whole new reason to fly could help give the airlines back some valuable market force, especially as real time communications tools remove a lot of the need for business travel.

Still, the Vuzix / HeadApp arrangement is likely to prove mutually beneficial as it sits, and though only time will tell just how well this catches on, it's a safe bet that more than a few planes will see this service added on to at least some degree.




Edited by Maurice Nagle




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