Reliance AGM 2020: Mukesh Ambani Dives Into Nascent Market With Jio Glass
Jio Glass is a mixed reality eyewear that anchors virtual objects to the real world.
After having upended India’s telecom market, Mukesh Ambani is now looking to mainstream a nascent technology that global giants from Google to Apple Inc. have all flirted with.
Ambani’s Jio Platforms Ltd. announced Wednesday the Jio Glass—a mixed reality eyewear that anchors virtual objects to the real world. Jio Glass, that already supports 25 applications, can be used to conduct virtual meetings and online classrooms, said Kiran Thomas, president of Reliance Industries Ltd. at the firms’s it’s 43rd annual general meeting.
While details were scant, the announcement propels Jio Platforms in a space that many global tech companies are trying to conquer.
Google was the earliest to try its hand at smart glasses with its $1,500-prototype of the Google Glass in 2013 with potential use cases in healthcare, journalism and navigation. Exorbitant pricing and the fact that it never got available for most consumers meant that the product failed.
Seven years since, a lot has changed. Companies like Magic Leap, Snap Inc. and Microsoft Corp. followed with their own iterations. But those too remain a novelty.
Apple Inc. has been working on its own set of AR glasses. A long-standing project of the company, the glasses could be announced by next year, according to Bloomberg. There is an expectation that Apple’s version of the smart glasses could finally bring the technology to the mainstream.
Google itself has not given up on its plans for smart glasses. It continues to sell the Glass Enterprise Edition 2, albeit in limited numbers. Launched in May last year, the Google Glass is currently being used in a variety of industries like logistics and manufacturing by companies including General Electric Co., Volkswagen AG and DHL International GmBH. Earlier this year, the glasses were also made available to software developers who were interested in building further solutions for the technology.
With Google now to be a shareholder in Jio Platforms, it remains to be seen if the Jio Glass will feature any collaboration between the two companies. The two are already working together to build cheap Android-based smartphones. Besides, Facebook Inc.—another investor in Jio—had last month showcased a proof-of-concept for lightweight virtual reality glasses.
Details of the launch date, pricing and the technology being used in Jio Glass were not disclosed at the annual general meeting.
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