The last time a company tried popularizing wearable tech embedded in glasses, most notably with Google Glass, the public mostly rejected the idea as equal parts creepy and silly.
Now a new project looks to take another whack at the tech space with a pair of glasses that double as a fitness tracker.
VSP Global is teaming up with the University of Southern California (USC) Center for Body Computing to work on presenting the glasses, called Level, as a option for those who’ve embraced devices like the FitBit and Apple Watch.
This isn’t the first time VSP has tried its hand at entering the tech sector. The company previously worked with Google to offer subsidized frames with prescription lenses for Google Glass.
But this time around, VSP is in the lead position and the technology will largely be invisible, thus doing away with the apprehension some had when it came to wearing a device like Google Glass in public.
The prototypewill equip a number of users with the glasses and an associated smartphone app that will track the wearer’s activity.
“The new Level frames forced us to reimagine the entire design and manufacturing process for eyewear,” said Leslie Muller, co-lead of VSP Global’s innovation lab, The Shop.
“Designers collaborated with firmware and biomedical engineers, who collaborated with traditional eyewear craftspeople to produce something that is both technologically advanced but also seamless and beautiful.”
At present, there are no plans to make the Level glasses available to the general public, but the prototype research test will publish its findings in 2017.