Majority of the augmented reality headsets out there today are either very expensive, or limited to your phone, but this new headset aims to make AR both affordable and immersive. Introducing Ghost – who is currently raising funds on Indiegogo – which leverages the AR capabilities of your smartphone to merge the real and the digital right before your eyes.
While virtual reality headsets are now available in all shapes and sizes, augmented reality is still the new kid on the block. With headsets like the Microsoft HoloLens and the Magic Leap One remain limited to developers with a lot of cash to spare, but at the same time, Apple and Google are bringing increasingly complex AR to our everyday smartphones.
Ghost is here to change things up, by combining the best of both worlds: a fully immersive AR experience, but one that still uses your phone to power it, it keeps costs down and letting you roam free without any unnecessary cables wanting to follow you around.
The headset features a holder for your phone on top and a visor underneath, through which you can view the real world, and with smartphone-powered projections overlaid above. It's been two years since Ghost has been in the making and the developers behind the device say they were inspired by smartphone powered VR headsets like Samsung Gear VR and Google's Daydream View, which are all inexpensive, simple and fun.
If the crowdfunding project goes according to plan, Ghost will bring a 70-degree field of view, inside-out tracking (that uses your phone's sensors to judge where you are in 3D space), it also produces a high-resolution image in front of your eyes, but is limited in part by the screen resolution of the phone that you are using.
The headset will be compatible with any iPhone launched since 2015's iPhone 6s, as well as both generations of the Google Pixel handset, the Galaxy S7 and S8 as well. There is, for now, no word on how many other phones might become compatible with Ghost.
The software side of Ghost features Ghost OS, which lets you view 3D models, YouTube Clips, and macOS apps floating in mid-air in front of you, right out of the box. The makers behind the Ghost promise that AR apps can be easily ported over from smartphones and Ghost can also work as a standard VR headset (literally, best of both worlds).
All this should be enough to give Ghost a good head start in terms of software, but as with any crowdfunding project, various challenges remain. The team need to raise $80,000 (US) over the next month to make the concept a reality and become a real product.
The pledges start at $79 for an early bird special on Indiegogo, and if everything goes according to plan, the headsets are expected to be shipped in February 2019. Have a look at the story of the Ghost, in the video below.