Finally, a worthwhile use for technology.
Everybody knows that the more you spend on a pair of sunglasses, the faster you lose them. Death, taxes and lost sunglasses: these three things are guaranteed.
I can say with 99% confidence that I’ll never spend $350 on a pair of sunglasses. One, because I’m cheap. Two, because the last pair of $100+ sunglasses I owned were swallowed whole by the Atlantic Ocean before I even got my credit card statement. The $30 pair I bought to replace them? They seem to follow me around like a doughy Twitter user chasing a roving food truck. I can’t shake ’em.
But – BUT! — the idea of a $350 pair of sunglasses that connect to your iPhone and alert you if you lose them seems to be a better use of $350 than a $350 pair of sunglasses that don’t connect to anything.
These Tzukuri sunglasses will be available toward the end of the year for around $350 (the company seems to be hinting at some sort of crowdfunding campaign, promising early backers a $100 discount) and connect via low-energy Bluetooth to an iPhone app. An Android version will be in the works once BLE (the Bluetooth Low Energy standard) becomes more pervasive on Android handsets.
Should you wander off without your glasses, the app will alert you at 16 feet, 32 feet and 50 feet. The glasses have a range of 82 feet, and their last known location can be plotted on a map if you lose them. The technology to do all this stuff is crammed into a tiny three-millimeter chip hidden in the glasses, which is recharged via solar power.
As for the glasses themselves, they’re ridiculous. And I mean that as a compliment. They’re handcrafted in Japan, each taking up to three weeks to cobble together. There are six styles available, each paying homage to someone famous (whether real or fictional): Atticus Finch, JFK, Tom Ford, John Lennon, Grace Kelly and Truman Capote. As 9to5Mac.com reports, there are prescription glasses in the works as well.
I’ll bet you a buck that none of them would fit my gargantuan cranium. That’s probably best, though: These things may alert me if I walk away from them, but my jam seems to be losing expensive sunglasses in the ocean. And that ocean… she’s a fickle mistress. Once she takes your shades, there’s no getting them back.