This post is part of our new Disruption by AR series where we interview the leading founders and executives who are leveraging big data analytics to reshape the future of their industry.
An interview with Harrison Gross, co-founder of Lucyd.
1. What problem does Lucyd solve?
HG: The AR revolution is being held back because no one has developed smartglasses that are ergonomic, practical, discreet and comfortable for all-day wear.
2. What is your solution to the problem?
HG: Lucyd has exclusively licensed 13 innovative AR optics patents, and assembled a team of global leaders in optics, AR and ergonomics to build the first lightweight, prescription-ready smartglasses with a wide field of view. Lucyd Lens will, look and feel like regular eyeglasses, and we’re also developing a decentralized app store that will make it very easy to create, share and experience AR apps and media. Our beta of 500 pairs is expected to launch in about a year.
3. What are the top three tech trends you're seeing in AR?
#Tech Trend 1: We believe that AR will become more widely adopted once a smartglass can fit the form of standard spectacles. Eyeglasses were first introduced in 1290, in Pisa, Italy. For more than 700 years, people have embraced the current eyeglass design motif to correct their vision and as a fashion accessory. Due to its nature as a facial wearable, smartglasses need to be lightweight and highly customizable, both features that Lucyd technology enables.
#Tech Trend 2: Increasing enhanced field of view (EFV), the AR-supported scope, to be able to support all or most of the user’s natural visual field. For smartglasses to go mainstream, first and foremost, they must be good glasses available in a wide variety of frame styles. Smartglasses are not a traditional consumer electronics product like a wearable exercise monitor or a smartwatch, but rather an evolutionary leap in current eyeglasses. This is necessary for intelligent positioning of real and virtual objects in the visual field.
#Tech Trend 3: Hands free control of smartglasses with microphones and bone conducting speakers to leverage artificial intelligence tools like Siri, Google Voice and Alexa.
4. What's the future of AR?
Prediction #1: Lightweight, prescription-ready smartglasses, available in a wide variety of frame styles, with HD solid-seeming interface engaged at will.
Prediction #2: To reduce cost and provide manufacturing design flexibility, 3D printing of lenses with the electro-optics necessary for AR.
Prediction #3: Initially, smartglasses will of necessity be a Bluetooth peripheral to the smartphone. However, smartglasses will eventually incorporate all of the capabilities of smartphones for a truly handsfree mobile computing experience.
5. What made Lucyd decide to do an ICO instead of more traditional funding routes?
- Blockchain’s promise is the decentralization of trust, potentially enabling value exchange without intermediaries in a democratized ecosystem. It provides the potential for financial transactions to be verified and cleared without the need for a trusted third party sitting between market participants. Removing intermediaries reduces costs and complexity and should enhance security, while also enabling a freer exchange of value and services.
- Blockchain offers a number of exciting opportunities, including secure peer to peer transactions. In blockchain we saw the incredible potential to develop the Lucyd platform, through our token generation event, where we will launch our AR utility token called LCD. It also provides enhanced functionality for an AR content ecosystem, which through the Lucyd Lab blockchain can grow rapidly and be community-regulated. Our blockchain will let developers mine new LCD by creating quality content, with more LCD being released as the content gets more positive ratings. Downrated content can be automatically removed from the ecosystem, and developers can gain influence and prominence in the ecosystem by continually creating well-rated content.
- LCD has a number of vital functions in the Lucyd platform. It will allow highly secure, rapid, P2P transactions on the Lucyd network. For example, you could send LCD to your colleague simply by speaking the command in-Lens. By having both the medium of access, and the hardware wallet itself in a single unit, we believe highly secure and convenient cryptocurrency transactions will be possible.
- By letting developers mine tokens with quality content, and rewarding users for community-building actions, we believe our AR platform can grow much faster with the blockchain than traditional app ecosystems. LCD can be used for purchases of smartglasses, Lucyd native content and in-lens transactions, creating a decentralized micro-economy around our hardware platform.
- A token generation event is much faster than traditional fundraising methods, which is especially important in the rapidly-advancing AR space.
- A final reason for using a token generation event to raise contributions for development of our smartglasses, is that the typical token purchasers are tech-savvy and more likely to be an early adopter of our next-gen smartglasses.