Instructor: David Schuff, Section 003

Intel’s Vaunt Disrupting Eye Wearables

Intel introduced the prototype for its new Vaunt glasses in December in attempt to create widespread acceptance of smart glasses. Google Glass was the most notable pair of smart glasses released five years ago. Other brands came and went, but none stuck. Intel’s hypothesis behind the failure of smart glasses was the style of the glasses. The advanced technology of the first smart glasses required many micro chips and processors, which inhibited the overall look of the glasses. Intel, recognizing that in order to get consumers to wear glasses on their face, rolled out Vaunt with less technological capabilities, but a much more modern and sleek style that is almost indistinguishable from any other regular pair of glasses. By taking a step back and realizing that glasses are an accessory and style is inherently important, I think Intel has taken the first step toward creating a product that will be widely adopted. Additionally, early smart glasses tried to cram too many features into their technologies, many of which were unnecessary to consumers. Intel’s Vaunt takes only the most useful features and combines it with an appealing design to cause low-end disruption in the smart glasses market.

Source: photo

3 Responses to Intel’s Vaunt Disrupting Eye Wearables

  • I think Intel made great use of using Google Glass’ failures to build their [future] success. Two main features of Glass inhibited its adoption: cost and style. At $1,500, most people simply could not afford to become adopters of smart glasses. Intel removing unnecessary technology should drive down the price and allow more people to access the technology, which typically drives adoption. Also, Vaunt seems far more normal looking and stylish. From the image, I can’t tell that they are smart glasses. I think that the key to smart glass success will be getting people to actually wear them frequently. Smart glasses will need to make use of the “tipping point” effect and get just enough people to wear them to the point where everyone will want a pair. After that, smart glasses will be “normal” and focus may eventually shift from style to technological capability.

  • I agree that too many features were packed into Google glasses, which enabled the product almost useless due to stylistic concerns. However, another product that was recently released, Snapchat’s spectacles also were a form of wearable tech that completely tanked. Although these glasses were more unique, they lost the company almost $40 Million. They were also a very specific product that chose only a couple of functionalities versus many. Intel’s new product may work, but there is not a very promising past as evidenced by other companies’ failures.

  • Matt – this is a great find. I agree with Intel’s strategy, these do look hip and stylish. However, I do wonder what they will cost compared to the Google Glass. It looks like Intel is releasing an early access program like Google did. However, Google never went to market outside of their beta platform so there isn’t anything to compare Vaunt’s future price point to. The glasses seem like they will run on a similar platform to the Google Glass, where developers will have open access to create applications for the glasses, and users will [assumably] control the glasses uses a smartphone application. When you were reading about these, what features did you notice Vaunt was going to get rid of that previous versions of AR glasses had, notable Google Glass? From my experience using Google Glass (courtesy of Mart Doyle), the features were fairly minimal, however you had the ability to load additional applications on to the glasses. Lastly, I remember there were privacy concerns with smart eye-ware in general about the ability to take pictures and record video without people knowing. I wonder how Intel will mitigate those concerns among the public with Vaunt.

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