Life with Head Mounted Display [Part 2]

Dec 11, 2008
Mayuko Uno, Nikkei Electronics

Continued from Life with Head Mounted Display [Part 1].

The UP300x in a white box was delivered to our news room. I closely examined it and found that there was no manual, PC connector cable or PC software in the box. When I asked whether the peripheral parts would be made available at a later date, Nikon answered that it did send us a compatible cable or software because they have not been completed yet.

Casting a contemptuous glance at me being upset about the missing manual, the other reporters quickly found a battery case, inserted alkaline batteries into it, turned the switch on and booted the UP300x. It seems that they could start the device intuitively, even without a manual.

Nikon said it will only include a simple operation guide with the actual product and release the manual on a Website. I guess this is a very common practice for portable electronic devices of late.

My editor, who is strict about displays, wore the UP300x first. Previous HMDs often looked prominent and odd on the head, sometimes even scary when seen up close. But the UP300x gave me the impression of a slightly oversized set of headphones because of its relatively inconspicuous display part. As far as I could tell from a short distance, I did not feel that the new HMD looked out of place.

What amazed me more than expected was the facial expression of the person wearing the HMD. Probably trying to focus on a screen which cannot be seen, the right eye (in this case) was darting back and forth. For the people around him, this was quite spooky.

As the person wearing the HMD is concentrating on the screen, it is difficult for him to notice that they are getting funny looks from the people around them. They have no idea how weird they look, either.