Qualcomm is introducing a wireless version of its augmented reality Smart Viewer, a reference design that manufacturers could adapt into commercial headsets. The Wireless AR Smart Viewer updates Qualcomm’s earlier smart glasses design with a higher-powered chipset, plus a tethering system that uses Wi-Fi 6 / 6E and Bluetooth instead of a USB-C cable. That comes with the tradeoff of a potentially very short battery life — although Qualcomm says consumer-ready versions might be designed differently.

The new Smart Viewer was developed by Goertek. It’s currently available to a few manufacturing partners with plans to expand access in the coming months. Like its predecessor, it connects to a phone or computer and delivers mixed reality experiences with full head and hand tracking, using tracking cameras and projections powered by micro-OLED displays. Qualcomm has maintained the previous 1920×1080 resolution and 90Hz refresh rate, but it’s slightly narrowing the field of view, dropping it from 45 degrees to 40 degrees diagonal.

A comparison between Qualcomm’s wired and wireless glasses

That’s substantially smaller than the non-consumer-focused Magic Leap 2, which offers closer to 70 degrees. But in its favor, the Smart Viewer has a slimmer profile than either the wired Smart Viewer or most competitors. Its frames are 15.6mm deep compared to around 25mm for the wired version, softening AR glasses’ typical bug-eyed look. (This shallower design, which…

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