Magic Leap heads to AT&T stores, along with AR Game of Thrones experience

But no cellular, yet.

Scott Stein Editor at Large
I started with CNET reviewing laptops in 2009. Now I explore wearable tech, VR/AR, tablets, gaming and future/emerging trends in our changing world. Other obsessions include magic, immersive theater, puzzles, board games, cooking, improv and the New York Jets. My background includes an MFA in theater which I apply to thinking about immersive experiences of the future.
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Scott Stein
2 min read

Magic Leap will meets GoT.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Westeros will show up in augmented reality, if you happen to be in Boston, Chicago or San Francisco.

AT&T has announced that three US stores will be selling Magic Leap One Creator Edition AR headsets starting April 1 (no joke), along with unique AR experiences tied to Game of Thrones.

This is AT&T's first significant retail push for  Magic Leap since the hardware's launch last fall. But this retail launch of the $2,295 AR headset will be pretty limited: It will arrive April 1 in Boston (Boylston Street), April 3 in Chicago (Michigan Avenue) and April 6 in San Francisco (Powell Street). AT&T also publicly demoed Magic Leap hardware in December in Chicago, along with a special Fantastic Beasts-themed AR experience.

The hardware will be exactly the same as what's been available previously. The self-contained AR hardware runs off an Nvidia Tegra X2 processor and creates 3D effects meshed into reality through its tethered goggles. Magic Leap's hardware doesn't have cellular onboard yet. Instead, it requires Wi-Fi.

AT&T is planning to make a move to 5G and bring Magic Leap along, but for now those developments will be limited to Magic Leap's Florida headquarters later this year for 5G AR testing.

As for these retail Magic Leap Game of Thrones experiences, it could be worth a drop-in if you live nearby. The location-based mixed reality experience is built specifically for the AT&T retail stores. The "Dead Must Die" encounter, according to AT&T's press release:

"...challenges the bravest of fans to confront a White Walker and lead the fight for the living. Curious visitors will be fitted with a Magic Leap One and step into a physical representation of King's Landing, which instantly transforms into an ominous, icy scene that begs investigation. With torch in hand, visitors become soldiers in a standoff, as a frozen portal reveals the deadly world beyond the wall. It's scary to see a White Walker, but it's much scarier when it sees you."

AT&T owns HBO, which is launching the final season of Game of Thrones on April 14.

It still feels like AR headsets are a long way from becoming everyday items, but these store pop-ups may be the most accessible way of trying Magic Leap hardware in the near future, if you're AR-curious.

Wearing Magic Leap One for the first time

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Originally published March 27 at 6:30 a.m. PT.
Update, 8:13 a.m.: Adds mention of December pop-up in Chicago.