Monday, October 21, 2013

Virtual Reality Projected Directly onto your Retina

American tech startup Avegant has an exciting prototype called “virtual retinal display”. The company has developed a wearable device with a micro-mirror array and precise optics to project images directly onto the retina.

It might look like regular head-mounted display but unlike Oculus Rift and other VR HMDs that use LCD screens, it is able to deliver exceptionally sharp images by projecting directly onto each of your retinas. The actual WXGA (1280x768) resolution is low but it is perceived by your brain as seamless, clear and vivid image via precise pixel blending. There is a drawback though. Very precise optical alignment and focusing is required, which some consumers might find frustrating. This is reason why Google decided not to use this approach in Glass. On the plus side, eye strain is reduced considerably as your eyes are not fixed on close screens with an artificial parallax. 

Avegant plans to show the device at January 2014 CES followed by a crowd-funded effort for mass production. There is no price yet, but the company has stated that it will use a competitive price-point.