Motorola HC1: Google Goggles for the enterprise

The head-mounted computer is aimed at enterprises

Motorola Solutions has unveiled a head-mounted, voice-controlled computer that's targeted at the military and other industries where workers need hands-free access to information.

Called the HC1, the device runs on an ARM processor and has an optional camera to send back real-time video over a wireless network.

Unlike Google Goggles, though, the HC1 is aimed at the enterprise market with a price tag of US$4,000-$5,000 per unit.

Areas the company has been experimenting with include "high-end repair markets," such as aircraft engines, said Paul Steinberg, CTO of Motorola Solutions (which is the part of Motorola Google did not acquire). "Emergency medical personnel at trauma centers might be looking at this too."

The HC1 will augment what users see by providing additional data, he said. Multiple units could be networked together and share information.

See the HC1 in a video on YouTube.

One difficulty with products like the HC1 can be finding the exact position for the screen, so the user can see what's being displayed. The voice commands and gesture controls seemed accurate and responsive when a reporter tried them, however. Calling out category headings opens new applications.

The so-called "optical micro-display" from Kopin Corporation is supposed to simulate a view of a 15-inch screen.

The HC1 runs Microsoft Windows CE 6.0 Professional. When it ships in the first half of 2013 it will come with Wi-Fi connectivity, but Steinberg said it could eventually have 3G and 4G radios.

Nick Barber covers general technology news in both text and video for IDG News Service. E-mail him at Nick_Barber@idg.com and follow him on Twitter at @nickjb.

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Nick Barber

IDG News Service
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