Facebook recently announced their partnership with Luxottica which is a maker of Ray-Ban to release the first pair of smart glasses in 2021. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated in a live stream of Facebook Connect that after spending some time with Ray-Ban’s team and visiting their factory, he became sure that they would be the right partner to bring the best technology for the best glasses.
The glasses would be made as a part of multi-year partnership between Facebook and Luxottica. The pairing was first reported by CNBC in 2019. Zuckerberg didn’t reveal the full details about the glasses but said that Facebook is planning to release a research device named Project Aria which the company would use to learn as soon as the smart glasses are developed.
According to Andrew “Boz” Bosworth, who is the head of hardware for Facebook, Project Aria glasses would be worn by Facebook employees and contractors in the company’s campus and public from September. It would not have augmented reality features and are not for sale. They would be able to capture video, audio, eye-tracking and location data which Facebook can use to aid the development of augmented reality smart glasses.
Bosworth has also stated that the glasses will help them to understand the process of building the software and hardware required for real, working AR glasses. Employees wearing Project Aria glasses would go through a training on when and where they can wear the research devices. Sensitive places will be off limits and before the data collected is used for research, it will be scrubbed of details like people’s faces or vehicle license plates. The workers would be provided with clothes that would easily make them identified as Facebook employees.