As Google released it’s the Glass Project the other day, Canon also came out with its MReal System or the Canon Mixed Reality System. But unlike the Google Glass, which will trickle down to consumers of smartphone devices, Canon’s MReal is headed towards the manufacturing aspect of devices such as those used in defense, automobiles and even medical researchers. Canon’s mixed reality system is slated to simplify product designs in the industries it hopes to target once it is released.
With a steep price of $125,000 plus an additional $25,000 for yearly maintenance, it looks like Canon is not going to diversify the market for MReal System. Unless this device goes down the price range between $1,000 to $1,500, I don’t think ordinary consumers will be able to afford the Canon MReal. After all, what are you going to do with a $125,000 3D glasses? Merely watch movies? So unless you are a car designer, a medical researcher or a museum curator, then the Canon MReal may just be something you have to dream about.
Slated for a March 1 release, the Canon MReal is a head-mounted display that generates video of your surroundings using the cameras positioned right in front of your eyes. The cameras are integrated with computer-generated graphics that will create three-dimensional images for virtually every little thing that you set your eyes on. You can only imagine how helpful this device would be when you are a medical researcher wanting to prove the benefits of a certain drug. The MReal will allow you to have a 3D image of a picture of the human anatomy you have on your table.
And unlike other technology where you will have to put up eight-feet display screens just to have that augmented reality, the Canon MReal will create that virtual world for you using the reality you are currently in. It doesn’t need a pre-taped video or an image to turn into a 3D format. Everything you see with the MReal are exactly the things that surround you.
The audience was mighty impressed with the device’s capacity when Canon showcased it during an event held at the Manhattan’s Classic Car Club. Reports have been saying that Canon used the MReal to make observers get an almost “real feel” of a convertible car.
“It was remarkably real. I wanted to reach out and touch the car,” Holly Muscolino, an IDC analyst who attended the Canon MReal demonstration, told TechNewsWorld.
Although Canon continued to impress technology observers with their new system, it still remains to be seen whether industries will see the $125,000 price tag as something they can invest in. Will it live up to its promise? Can the Canon MReal make the creation of prototypes easier and faster? Is mixed reality a phenomenon we should look out for or conventional research methods are still the way to go? Such questions will remain unanswered, of course, until the MReal System is put into test by its target markets—the defense, construction, medical, scientific and automobile industries.