The first Photo of Magic Leap AR prototype leaks
The future of Magic Leap, a quickly expanding startup valued at $4.5 billion that’s developing a futuristic pair of computer glasses, depends on releasing its still-in-development, secret product to the public. A secretive augmented reality startup, is not so secretive these days.
The multibillion-dollar-valued a Magic Leap has been wrestling with a PR nightmare over the past few months. That nightmare may be about to get a lot more vivid thanks to a leaked photo.
An image of a prototype device was just leaked to Business Insider, which says the source referred to the device as “PEQ0,” a stand-in derived from an internal prototype naming scheme used by the company.
— Dave Smith (@redletterdave) February 11, 2017
For years, the US-based startup company–Magic Leap, has promised to release a set of smart glasses that overlays computer graphics on the real world, a technology usually referred to in Silicon Valley as “augmented reality.”
Ahead of a board meeting planned for next week, Magic Leap’s “whole engineering group is scrambling” to produce a working prototype of Magic Leap’s glasses – a prototype the company has been calling the “PEQ” – a person familiar with Magic Leap’s development process told Business Insider.
Business Insider reported earlier this week that employees at Magic Leap are “scrambling” ahead of an important board meeting where the prototype is expected to be demoed. According to that report, the prototype uses two different packs, one for battery and the other for computing power. That means US based startup company is far off from its supposed goal of having a handheld device one could reasonably wear on the belt or keep in a pocket, as some patent applications have suggested.
According to the report, the photo itself was taken in January, but that doesn’t mean the device shown (described as an “early prototype”) looks anything like the latest version of the company’s latest prototype.
The company has yet to comment on the leaked photo, and it should be emphasized once again that there is no confirmation that this is, in fact, a device created by Magic Leap — so far, we only have the claims made by Business Insider. When contacted by Business Insider, the company declined to comment.
Back in December, The Information revealed some embarrassing details about the company after getting access to a prototype demo, chatting with CEO Rony Abovitz, and collecting accounts from employees who leaked details anonymously. Those details include confirmation that Magic Leap used misleading marketing material to suggest it was farther along than it really was and statements from Abovitz and others that indicate Magic Leap may be no different than Microsoft’s HoloLens.