[Ceatec] NTT Docomo, Olympus Develop Light-weight AR Glasses

Oct 6, 2010
Tetsuo Nozawa, Nikkei Electronics
The head-mounted display for augmented reality (AR) and the "HT-01A" mobile phone, which is used for transmitting images and as a sensor.
The head-mounted display for augmented reality (AR) and the "HT-01A" mobile phone, which is used for transmitting images and as a sensor.
[Click to enlarge image]
A tiny display and a light guide mounted on the right temple of plano glasses
A tiny display and a light guide mounted on the right temple of plano glasses
[Click to enlarge image]

NTT Docomo Inc exhibited a head-mounted display (HMD) that is used for augmented reality (AR) and has a very low weight at Ceatec Japan 2010.

The HMD, "AR Walker," is made by mounting optical systems such as a tiny display and a light guide on the right temple of plano glasses. When the HMD is worn, images can be seen in the lower half of the right eye's field of view. NTT Docomo developed the HMD in collaboration with Olympus Corp.

Olympus announced a similar HMD in 2008, but its weight was 91g, which is much heavier than normal glasses (10-20g). This time, NTT Docomo and Olympus drastically reduced the weight and realized an HMD whose weight is equivalent to that of normal glasses.

At the trade show, the two companies had a demonstration of connecting the HMD to NTT Docomo's "HT-01A" mobile phone and guiding through Kyoto City. Specifically, when the user looks at an image of the city displayed on a large screen, "Docomo Dake," NTT Docomo's character, shows the way to the destination and introduces stores.

By using an acceleration sensor and a direction sensor of the HT-01A, images are displayed on the HMD in accordance with the direction the user is facing. Also, when the user looks up, weather forecasts are displayed seemingly by using an acceleration sensor of the HMD.

Though NTT Docomo has not yet determined a release date, it said, "We are now discussing it."