Let's start with the phenomenon Augmented Reality and have a chat about it. Augmented Reality is a fascinating and completely digital world which is projected over the real physical world. The possibilities for using augmented reality seems to be endless and there are even statements saying that augmented reality is going to have much more impact than virtual reality. This because of the fact that augmented reality can be used in tons of situations. There is only one big drawback. The hardware is very expensive and simply costs too much for most of the people.
This was the start of our journey where the goal was and still is: making augmented reality hardware available for everybody. It had to be easy to build, easy to use and most importantly: it should be affordable. Our main inspiration is the Google Cardboard because it made a virtual reality experience available for so many people due to its cheap design. We believe that this is also possible for augmented reality and we need your help to accomplish this. Before we continue, we'd like to introduce you our product which is going to make all of this happen, meet: Spectabox.
Spectabox adds a digital layer to the real world using your mobile phone. The design makes Spectabox very affordable because it's mainly built out of cardboard. The use of cardboard also makes Spectabox very easy to customize. By using your smartphones and cleverly placed mirrors, Spectabox projects digital layers onto a high-quality transparent plastic visor. Spectabox is capable of delivering a spectacular glimpse in the future at a very affordable - even cheap - price. This is only possible because of its clever design, amazing software and the use of a smartphone instead of other fancy expensive hardware.
- The cardboard Body that holds all the components
- High-quality reflective plastic visor
- Comfortable elastic headband
- Mobile app
By installing the custom made Spectabox app onto your mobile (both iOS and Android), you can use the Spectabox for what it is made for: giving you an amazing experience.
By using Spectabox, you can do a lot of things without losing sight on what you are doing. A few examples:
- Follow a cooking (or any other) tutorial and see the instructions right in front of you.
- Need some help? Make a video call with the Spectabox. The person being called can see where you are looking at in real-time. The person you called appears as a hologram in front of you. Receiving instructions couldn’t be easier and definitely couldn't be more awesome.
- Let 3D models or products come to life in mid air. Place virtual screens in the air (think about graphs, movies, etc.).
- A whole new way of e-learning possibilities. For example: Discover the universe in your own home.
We can keep going for a while like this, but you get the point: Spectabox creates a lot of awesome experiences.
How we started this project
Spectabox is created out of curiosity but also out of frustration. For us, it's very hard to see that a lot of people can't enjoy augmented reality because of the high hardware pricing. This is why we started this project, thinking about how we could change this. Spectabox isn't here to compete with the more expensive and fancier AR glasses. Spectabox is here to make an amazing augmented reality experience available for everybody.
Where are we now?
After a lot of research and prototyping, we finally have a fully working model including the build schemes. It needs a bit more improvement at some bits and pieces but the most important and most difficult mechanics are working. To make the Spectabox amazing, we need great software. That's why we recently started developing the custom made app for both iOS and Android.
We are also working on a free SDK for developers, thinking about a developers portal and are talking to different suppliers.
Where do we want to go?
Eventually, we want Spectabox to be the number one DIY augmented reality glasses. By releasing the building schemes, we do like to give people a choice. They can buy a ready to use Spectabox but if they don't, they can build one from scratch.
How does it work?
Spectabox completely works by using your smartphone. Images from the smartphone are transferred by using mirrors. This way, it's possible to use all kind of images as a digitally augmented layer. The most tricky part of the project was configuring the mirror's angle in combination with the high-quality plastic visor inside the Spectabox. Due to precise calculations, we can ensure that all the angles have the most optimal configuration. Many tests and prototypes resulted in a fully working model which you can order right now. To use the Spectabox, it's required that you minimally use a 3.5-inch smartphone. For the best results, we recommend a 5.1-inch smartphone.
Who are we?
The Spectabox is invented, build and designed in the augmented- and virtual reality studio of AVRGE. At AVRGE, we are highly specialized in both virtual reality and augmented reality software. It's important for us that everybody can use our software and hardware. We are dedicated to deliver solutions for the 'average' people. People without large budgets. Do you get the name already? AVRGE also stands for Augmented- & Virtual Reality Graphical Environment. We have great expertise in building complex virtual reality and augmented reality software, but there was always some kind of 'missing' product. That's why we started this journey to discover how we could make augmented reality affordable for everybody. Tada, Spectabox was born! We already hear you asking: Why is it called the 'Spectabox'? Well, it's a compound of two words: the first word is 'Spectare' which is 'watching' in latin and the second one is 'box', because well... it's a box!
May: Finishing custom made Spectabox mobile app and testing last added functionalities
June: First backers receive their augmented poster
July/August: Start Spectabox production and start delivery to backers
Spectabox is made out of cardboard for the biggest part, but it also contains plastics and mirrors. Everything is designed to fit seamlessly with each other. The only thing left that you need to do, is adding a couple drops of glue at some points.
Custom color and branding
Spectabox can be delivered in the colors cardboard brown, black and grey. The whole batch will be delivered in the chosen color. You can also custom design the Spectabox when you reach reward #8 or #9. You can add your own company logo or any other random image.
At AVRGE we always say: The people from Kickstarter are the kings of the future. People who truly believe in new concepts, ideas and who are willing to contribute to those ideas. We think that people like you support new innovations and revolutions. Therefore, we want to present Spectabox first to you.