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Olympus plans to fight with Google Glass for your eyeballs

The MEG4.0 uses Bluetooth and is actually the latest in a long line of far-out augmented-reality attempts from the Japanese company.


How often have you looked at the latest, greatest innovation from a big Silicon Valley name like Apple or Google and thought "Pretty cool, but I'll wait to see if Olympus has a better take on it"?

Well, there's a first time for everything.

Following the skydiving debut of Google Glass, Olympus has unveiled its own take on augmented-reality glasses, called -- in true poetic Olympus style -- the MEG4.0.

A roughly translated press release tells us the heads-up display system utilizes Bluetooth, renders a 320x240 pixel QVGA display, and has a "base machine" weighing 30 grams, or 1.12 ounces.

Perhaps it's not fair to be so flip. After all, Olympus has actually been working on the notion of a wearable display for decades now, as this patent that TechCrunch dug up reveals.

Until Google got serious about augmented reality with Project Glass this year it's always been one of those outlandish Japanese concepts that didn't seem to have a chance of succeeding in the American market. A quick search of CNET unearths at least a few mentions of different Olympus "head mount displays" as well. We never got to do a hands-on, er... heads-on, though.

There's no word on when the Olympus goggles will be available or what the user interface will look like. Google has made Glass available to some developers in beta form for $1,500, and Sergey Brin says the product could be available to the general public in 2014.