Brilliant Labs unveils Frame AR smart glasses with multimodal AI for real-time visual search and translation
Fresh on the heels of the Apple Vision Pro launch comes the Frame from Brilliant Labs – a pair of smart glasses that delivers a more natural augmented reality (AR) experience. Powered by multimodal generative AI services, it allows you to navigate and interact with the physical world in real-time. Being completely open-source and hackable also means the Frame’s functionality can be expanded by third-party developers in the future.
On the design front, the Frame sports a retro round-framed look said to be inspired by icons like Gandhi, John Lennon and Steve Jobs. Weighing a mere 40 grams, the Frame integrates prescription lenses, so it can be conveniently worn all day, and the three colour options – black, white and frosted translucent – should appeal to most customers.
The lenses conceal a small micro-OLED unit which, with the help of a geometric prism optic, projects a 640 x 400 colour display within a 20° diagonal field of view. The primary inputs are a front-facing 1280 x 720 camera and microphone on the nose bridge, and a tap/double-tap input; there are no buttons, touch controls or open-ear speakers.
The Frame connects via Bluetooth to pair with Brilliant Labs' smartphone app 'Noa', an always-on AI voice assistant acting as the interface to several AI models: Perplexity AI for conversational search, Stable Diffusion for text-to-image generation, GPT4 for text-generation, and Whisper for speech recognition. This allows you to, say, check the online price of a product you’re looking at, estimate the calories in a food item, translate foreign language text on a signboard or translate speech audio from the microphone.
With the Frame’s form factor and functionality, comparisons with the Meta Ray Ban smart glasses are inevitable. While the two are indeed intended for very similar use cases, Meta’s smart glasses avoid the overlaid AR display in favour of open-ear speakers as the primary output. It also features touch controls and 32 GB of onboard storage for the photos and videos you capture. The Frame, on the other hand, does not store any data; it simply acts as a real-time interface to multiple AI services.
The Frame comes with a small charging ‘dock’ called Mister Power that slots in under the nose bridge and is itself charged via USB-C. The in-built battery is 222 mAh, supplemented by 149 mAh from Mister Power. Brilliant Labs claims that “at estimated normal use, [the Frame] can achieve all-day battery life together with Mister Power”. That said, it’s hard to define normal use for a new category like smart eyewear.
Brilliant Labs’ Frame can be pre-ordered now from its website, with the first batch shipping on April 15. It is priced at $349, putting it squarely in the same range as Ray Ban’s Meta smart glasses and Xreal’s Air 2 AR glasses, though well below the Xreal Air 2 Pro, which features a higher quality display with electrochromic dimming.