Xrai.Glass – augmented reality glasses you can buy which turn voices into subtitles in your field of view – and can translate from almost any language to another, too. 

Costing £395, as it is a UK invention, which is just under $700 in Australia, these glasses actually deliver what Google was showcasing at its most recent major conference called Google I/O earlier this year. 

The inventor, Dan Scarfe, noticed at a family event that his grandfather was sitting on the couch, and not able to interact, because of his deafness. 

He realised his grandfather used subtitles when watching TV, so why weren’t there subtitles in real life?

Of course you need augmented reality glasses and software that is capable of listening to what is being said and converted in real time to text, and because the technology actually exists to do this, he was able to create a custom system for his grandfather that he has now commercialised.

The site is https://Xrai.glass.

The founders say ‘We enrich and empower lives by giving people the tools to be themselves. Enabling the deaf and hard of hearing is just the beginning.’

It would also enable deaf people to experience radio.

Currently, the system is best used on a one-on-one basis but the founders are working hard to make it work as smoothly as possible when you have multiple speakers speaking. 

It also points to an incredible future where modern life will be greatly augmented with glasses of this type, and of course eventual contact lenses which can do the same thing. 

Of course, we will need, as consumers, to demand privacy so that our entire lives aren’t being recorded somewhere for companies, governments or others can spy on us even more than they already do. 

Alex Zaharov-Reutt