November 10, 2020 – Nreal, a developer of ready-to-wear mixed reality (MR) glasses, has today announced the launch of its Nreal Light consumer MR glasses in Japan by partnering with one of the country’s largest carriers, KDDI.
Earlier this year, Nreal announced the debut retail availability of Nreal Light in South Korea through a partnership with LG Uplus, a South Korean cellular carrier owned by LG Corporation, which helped to bring Nreal’s mixed reality offerings further into the mainstream consumer spotlight.
With today’s announcement, it means that Nreal Light glasses can now run on KDDI’s 5G network and offer its customers early access to the MR glasses, which can be paired with the certain 5G smartphones available at KDDI retail stores.
Starting December 1, 2020, KDDI customers will be able to purchase the Nreal Light glasses and experience an immersive, hands-free MR environment. The glasses will be available from any of KDDI’s retail stores throughout Tokyo and can pair with smartphones including the Sony Xperia 5 II or Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra.
This isn’t the first time that the two companies have partnered either – in October 2019, Nreal partnered with KDDI that saw the carrier invest in the development of spatial computing and the promotion of smart glasses in Japan. Through the collaboration, KDDI has supported the development of consumer applications based on Nreal Light and worked on tailoring the design of NrealLight for Japanese customers.
With partnerships with LGUplus in Korea and KDDI in Japan now announced, Nreal has stated that it is “on the cusp of a global rollout of the consumer version of Nreal Light, region-by-region.” In order to do this, the company is looking to partner with each region’s leading carriers.
It is through this collaborative approach with major cellular network carriers that Nreal expects it will be able to make its Nreal Light product more accessible to consumers, whether it comes bundled or to be used on a 5G network right out of the box.
As part of its debut launch in South Korea, Nreal made hundreds of the world’s most popular mobile apps available on Nreal Light – in addition to Nebula, the company’s 3D system that allows users of the Light to watch shows while browsing the internet, and arrange dozens of screens within their field of view. Apps that are available on the device include Google Chrome, Facebook, and Instagram. As per the 2019 partnership and as was the case with the LG Uplus partnership, it is likely that KDDI will also be launching exclusive apps on Nreal Light.
Out of the box, the consumer version of Nreal Light will come with:
- A pair of Nreal Light glasses;
- A corrective lens frame that accommodates near sighted users;
- Four different sized magnetically attachable nose pads;
- A ‘VR Cover’, which acts as a lens shade to completely occlude a user’s field of view, allowing the Nreal Light glasses to double as a virtual reality (VR) headset. By blocking the view of the outside world, users enjoy a more immersive gaming or video viewing experience.
The company did not announce a price in JP¥, but the consumer version of the Light retails for just under USD $600 in South Korea. For more information on Nreal and its mixed reality offering, please visit the company’s website.
Image / video credit: Nreal / YouTube
About the author
Sam is the Founder and Managing Editor of Auganix. With a background in research and report writing, he has been covering XR industry news for the past five years.