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Facebook and Luxottica are working on a pair of smart glasses

«The next step on the road to augmented-reality glasses»

Facebook and Luxottica are working on a pair of smart glasses «The next step on the road to augmented-reality glasses»

During the Facebook Connect virtual conference, Mark Zuckerberg revealed that Facebook and EssilorLuxottica have reached an agreement to produce smart glasses for augmented reality. The Facebook Smart Glasses (this is their unofficial name) is expected to go on the market in 2021, will be marketed through Ray-Ban and have been described by the Facebook founder as «the next step on the road to augmented-reality glasses» and are part of a multi-year project in partnership with the Italian-French industrial group named Project Aria.  

Zuckerberg called smart glasses a "next step" because the glasses will be more like existing models than actual AR glasses. The technology for a fluid and interactive augmented reality experience applied to glasses is still in development and the testers of Facebook Reality Labs are still in the experimental phase. In a monologue that looks like it came out of a science fiction movie Zuckerberg said: 

«The goal here is to develop some normal size, nice-looking glasses that you can wear all day and interact with holograms, digital objects and information while still being present with the people in the world around you. Maybe you want to just sit on your couch and have a friend teleport and have their holograms sit right next to you to play games or just talk or hang out. Maybe you’re walking somewhere and you want directions or you see something awesome and you want to share it without having to take out your phone.Maybe you don’t want to have to carry your phone around at all, or have to worry about having it take you away from the moment, you’re gonna be able to do all of this with a pair of glasses».

The reason for the partnership with Luxottica comes from the desire to make glasses interesting for the public even at the design level and not make them a simple unsightly gadget – the plans are those of maximum diffusion. It is also true that the news comes at a sensitive time for Facebook, which sees many show business personalities protest against its privacy policies and its neutrality in spreading the news that, according to the majority of opinion, would help the spread of fake news and hate speech. Zuckerberg, however, specified that an entire team dedicated to the project will only deal with the sensitive privacy and tracking issues that such a device could raise.