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Israel Trade & Economic Office, Embassy of Israel

Official Blog Network

Google, Watch Out! The “Google Glass” Is About to Face Some Competition By 2 Israeli Rivals

Lumus” and “Opgal“, two cutting-edge Israeli optics companies, have collaborated to develop a Google Glass-style night-vision display system:  something completely different.   Leveraging their superior technologies, Lumus, which manufactures personal displays for the eye, and Opgal, which develops thermal cameras for night vision, have established the Therm-App mobile device that, mounted on headgear, transmits high-resolution images to the Lumus wearable display, enabling the individual using it to notice objects in the dark as they would appear in the daytime. “The product is currently in progress and is intended to be available within few months”, the companies were quoted.

Lumus is not as well known as Google, however the Israeli company’s “near to eye personal displays” resemble to the American firm’s famous glass devices. Lumus, like Google, is developing a system that enables users to access the Internet, watch TV or video, play games and engage with augmented reality applications.

The Google Glass differ from the Lumus’s devices in their cool looks: the Israeli company’s device seems like an incredibly modern pair of sunglasses, rather than an orb-like attachment  that covers one lens of a pair of glasses, when it comes to the Google device.

Lumus claims that its primary advantage is the Light-guide Optical Element (LOE) technology, an ultra-thin lens design that embeds miniature, see-through elements in front of the eye. A projector embedded in the temple of the eyeglasses receives an image from the mobile device and projects it into the side of the LOE. As the image travels to the center of the lens, it is reflected into the eye via see-through elements, creating the effect of a virtual large screen.

Opgal explains that it develops and manufactures thermal imaging and near-infrared illumination camera solutions, mainly for security purposes. In the security market, Opgal enables transportation, city and state governments, industrial and utility customers to detect, recognize and identify security threats constantly, even in total darkness and tricky visibility conditions.

Opgal offers several consumer-oriented applications, most remarkably its new Therm-App, possibly the world’s first Android thermal imaging camera. Users can attach the camera to Android devices and take photos in the dark, with the imaging hardware and software noticing the images using night-vision advanced technique.

The synthesis of the Lumus’ and Opgal’s technologies is bigger than the power of each company individually  — a pair of Lumus LOE glasses that allows its consumers to see in the dark. “The combination of these two breakthrough technologies — Therm-App night vision with Lumus wearable displays — introduces an exciting and, more importantly, useful solution for professionals who require hands-free operation in complete darkness or limited visibility,” said Amit Mattatia, Opgal’s president and CEO.   “This innovative solution provides security teams, search and rescue first responders and other types of professionals working in darkness with lightweight, portable and powerful night vision capabilities,” Mattatia continued.

Dr. Eli Glikman, product officer director of Lumus was quoted as well:  “The combined solution of the Therm-App and Lumus eyewear demonstrates how our patented Light-guide Optical Element (LOE) technology allows for a new level of comfort, style and effectiveness for night vision applications, which can be utilized in numerous applications”.

Read the full “Times of Israel” article