RideOn ski goggles bring augmented reality to the slopes
Wearable technology is popping up in more and more areas of life — and that includes the ski slopes. The RideOn AR snow goggles have just appeared on Indiegogo, offering skiers and snowboarders a view of the mountain augmented with digital overlays. Don one of these headsets and you can get directions, messages, weather reports, virtual gates and more projected right in front of your eyes.
These kind of features are particularly useful up on a mountain, where the weather is often difficult and your hands are usually gloved up and holding skiing poles. Imagine being able to see which route to take down a slope or send a quick text reply to a friend just by tilting your head and moving your eyes. It's also possible to try and beat your previous run down a mountain and call up waiting times at gates and lifts.
Smart goggles like these aren't completely new: Recon, Oakley (also powered by Recon) and Zeal all have similar products on the market. But the team behind RideOn says its product is unique in the way it can detect the angle of the user's vision and overlay an accurate projection accordingly. This takes the technology from a simple heads-up display to a more immersive experience not completely dissimilar to the HoloLens technology that Microsoft has been showing off this week.
There's a built-in high-definition camera for shooting footage of your exploits on the slopes and of course social networking features if you want to share your adventures. Posting to the web requires a connection to a smartphone, but you can use many of the RideOn's features (including GPS navigation) without a paired handset. According to the Indiegogo listing the RideOn goggles should last for eight hours on a single battery charge, which is enough to get you through a day's skiing.
With a prototype model built, the team is looking for US$75,000 in funding between now and February 19, and you can claim your own pair of goggles with a pledge of $499 or more. If all goes to plan (never a certainty with crowdfunding campaigns) then the RideOn goggles should be shipped out to customers during September 2015. If you're going to take the plunge on a pair, why not combine them with a Forcite Alpine helmet for the ultimate hi-tech skiing trip?