Intel and eyewear maker Luxottica plans to launch their first product later this year, which is going to be special smart glasses designed for athletes. On Tuesday, the chip maker unveiled the technology called Radar Pace at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.
Intel’s tech better than Google Glass
The Luxottica-owned Oakley brand will be making the sunglasses that will apparently feature Intel’s wearable tech. In an on-stage demo, the chip maker showed how the Oakley glasses, which will come equipped with special earpieces on both sides, enable athletes to keep track of workout information like the speed and distance covered while running.
The Radar Pace technology, which is entirely voice-activated, allows wearers to perform all tasks just by talking to the device. This is simpler to use than Google Glass, which requires users to swipe the side of the headset to perform certain things.
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Intel CEO Brian Krzanich informed CES attendees that the product will be available in late 2016 but gave no details regarding the pricing or availability. Krzanich, who is a runner himself, has shown a strong liking for this area. The chip maker acquired Basis, which makes fitness bands and technology used by Intel in some of its partner products and for creating new Basis-branded products.
Intel well prepared for competition
Krzanich is laying a lot of emphasis on sports at CES this year and is set to announce several deals that will put Intel chips inside snowboards at ESPN’s X Games and also a partnership with New Balance to work on manufacturing an Android Wear fitness watch. New Balance informed tech watchers that the watch is scheduled for release by the next holiday season, and it won’t require a smartphone for connectivity. Intel also touted other deals, including a new partnership with Red Bull Media.
Intel is also all prepared to face competition in this growing market, said VP Steven Holmes in an interview with Re/code.
“There are a lot of sports and fitness companies that recognize the value that technology can bring, particularly to an athlete,” Holmes said.
eMarketer claims that at least one piece of wearable technology will be used by more than a third of adults on a monthly basis by 2019, compared to just 10% in 2014.