Infinity AR: We'll fulfill sci-fi promise of augmented reality

An Israeli startup hopes to bring features like face detection, voice tone detection, coupons based on your interests and location to your smart glasses.

Stephen Shankland Former Principal Writer
Stephen Shankland worked at CNET from 1998 to 2024 and wrote about processors, digital photography, AI, quantum computing, computer science, materials science, supercomputers, drones, browsers, 3D printing, USB, and new computing technology in general. He has a soft spot in his heart for standards groups and I/O interfaces. His first big scoop was about radioactive cat poop.
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4 min read
Infinity AR promotional video
In Infinity AR's concept video, smart glasses connect to the company's servers, which run face recognition to identify the bartender and voice tone analysis to find out that she's intrigued the video's main character knows she's a Gemini. Yes, it's a promotional video. screenshot by Stephen Shankland/CNET

Augmented reality has so far been mostly a sci-fi vision that overlays information from the virtual world atop what we see in the real world. An Israeli startup called Infinity Augmented Reality, though, wants to make a business of it.

In three to six months, Infinity AR plans to launch its app, called the Brain, for Google Glass; devices running Android, iOS, and Windows Phone; Microsoft Sync in cars; and perhaps most notably Meta's 3D augmented-reality glasses. The last example is closest to the science fiction vision of AR, where translucent information is merged with your full field of vision; Google Glass uses only a small screen that's above your regular line of sight.

The app will link back to Infinity AR servers that will handle the computing grunt work to enable various services, said Chief Executive Elon Landenberg. And it'll be free, since Infinity AR plans to make money by supplying ads deemed relevant to a person's changing interests.

Infinity Augmented Reality CEO Elon Landenberg
Infinity Augmented Reality CEO Elon Landenberg Infinity AR

"We are trying to develop the platform that uses augmented reality in the front end [devices people carry like phones or glasses] but uses artificial intelligence technology on the back end [the company's servers] to try to anticipate and understand what you need and what you want and then present it when you need it," Landenberg said.

Key to the company's sales pitch is making services that are useful -- and that go beyond existing ones like calendar notifications and the Google Now service for prompting people with information Google anticipates you'll want.

So what are those services exactly? Landenberg has several in mind to start with:

• Information about the mood of people you're talking to, based on their tone of voice.

• Face recognition of those around you, based on information those people have shared publicly already. Recognition isn't instant -- it takes about 30 seconds for a complete stranger and 5 seconds if only searching through a limited set of people such as a few hundred conference attendees. Depending on your mood, the software can tailor what it shows you.