During Oppo’s Inno Day showcase, the tech company unveiled Oppo Air Glass – an “assisted reality” (aR) headset for the Chinese market; designed to help make everyday tasks easier, with teleprompters, translation software, navigation tools and more.
An assisted reality (aR) headset provides information within the user’s direct field of view; on top of their surroundings, without obscuring them. They’re designed to offer a different experience to
augmented reality (AR) headsets, which instead use interactive, computer-generated imagery within real-world environments.
To put this more simply, the Oppo Air Glass compliments everyday life more than previous headsets, by focusing on text-based notifications and prompts, allowing users to remain aware of their surroundings.
The Oppo Air Glass recognises four different types of commands: touch, voice, hand movements and head movements. For example, users can open and close notifications by nodding or shaking their heads.
The design of the Oppo Air Glass is… unique, to say the least. It’s more of a monocle on a handle than a traditional headset. The lens itself has a winged shape, protected by sapphire glass. The frame arm comes in a choice of two colours: black and silver, and weighs 30 grams.
The Air Glass comes in two size options too and is suitable for users with refractive errors, like myopia and hypermetropia. It can be worn over traditional glasses too; which no doubt influenced the decision to employ a single frame design, rather than a double one.
Oppo claims that the Air Glass can be worn just like a regular pair of glasses, with the unit magnetically attaching to a pair of lensless silver half-frames or lensless black full frames that come with the headset.
The Oppo Air Glass runs on a Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100 chip, which is also seen on the likes of the Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3. The lens uses Oppo’s own technology, called a Spark Micro Projector, which is made up of advanced Micro LED tech and a bespoke “optical diffraction waveguide”.
The Spark Micro Projector is the size of a coffee bean and features better heat dissipation than
Oppo’s previous headwear. The Micro LED has an average brightness of up to 1400 nits, and the headset can be used in either 16-level colour mode or with 256-levels of greyscale viewing.
Oppo’s Air Glass is compatible with the Smart Glass App, which can be used on any Oppo phone with ColorOS 11 or above, as well as the Oppo Watch 2 – another China-exclusive product.
Pre-installed applications on the Oppo Air Glass include Weather, Calendar, Health, Teleprompter, Translation and Navigation. Currently, Air Glass can translate English to Chinese and vice versa, with the text displaying in the viewer’s eye line.
The presentation in which Air Glass debuted also showed a user on a bike, with the headset providing live directions for their journey. It’s not yet known whether additional apps and software will roll out to Air Glass in the coming months.
Oppo Air Glass will hit Chinese shelves in Q1 2022, with a range of accessories and a limited release. Pricing for the headset is yet to be revealed and there are currently no plans for it to release globally.
Hannah Cowton is a Senior Staff Writer at Tech Advisor and Macworld, working across entertainment, consumer technology and lifestyle. Her interests and specialities lie in streaming services, film and television reviews and rumours, gaming, wearables and smart home products. She's also the creator of The London Geek, a geek culture and lifestyle blog.