So, you don’t want to wear a smartwatch. We get it. I’d rather put on my blinged-out Rolex Diamond Daytona than a geeky smartwatch, too, if I had enough money to buy one. If you still want to get in on the whole hands-free notifications thing sans trading in your favorite wrist candy, these ION Glasses sound like a sweet alternative.
No, this isn’t a weird gadget that makes you look like a cyborg straight out of a future installment of Universal Soldier. Instead, it’s a pair of normal-looking glasses that you can outfit with regular optical lenses, so you can totally use it in place of your favorite pair of reading optics or sunglasses.
Like many connected wearable electronics, ION Glasses come packing a low-energy Bluetooth 4.0 chip, allowing it to pair with your smartphone wirelessly. Once paired, various types of notification are immediately transmitted to your glasses (calls, messages, emails, calendar reminders, social media updates, battery status, timers, and alarms), which uses a 256-color LED installed in the inside of the temple to alert you. Simply set the color for each type of notification from the app (along with other parameters like duration and frequency) and it will light up accordingly. All the electronics are installed on the temples (even batteries, which last 3 to 10 days), so no weird dangling objects anywhere on your face.
Aside from passively receiving alerts, the glasses come with a pair of buttons underneath the temple that let you control camera shutter, music playback, and audio recorder, among other smartphone functions. Have a habit of forgetting your glasses? Both the glasses and the smartphone app will generate an audible beep when they’re within a certain distance apart, immediately alerting you to the potentially upsetting situation. For a little novelty, the LED-backlit ION logo emblazoned on the side of the temple can also change color, so you can match it better with your chosen outfit for the day.
ION Glasses is currently collecting pre-orders on Indiegogo. Pledges to reserve a unit starts at $79.