Brother may spend a big chunk of its time on things like printers and sewing machines, but it's also quietly been working on some decidedly more futuristic products, and it may just be set to deliver on one of them. While it wasn't offering much in the way of specifics the last time we heard about its retina display technology, Brother now seems to have a fully developed, fully functional prototype (pictured above), and it says it plans to commercialize the glasses sometime "next year." Naturally, there are a few considerable limitations compared to more traditional displays, but the company's as yet unnamed goggles do promise to beam an 800 x 600 image directly into your retina that'll appear as a 10-centimeter wide image floating about one meter in front of them -- which is certainly no small feat, even if it may not be the most practical one. Slightly less specific, but also working on a retina display of its own is NEC, which apparently hopes to incorporate a microphone into their display and use it as a real-time translation device that would quite literally display subtitles as you talk to someone. Ambitious, to be sure, but NEC is also saying it hopes to get it on the market in 2010.

Read - Register Hardware, "Brother creates direct retinal imaging specs"
Read - Far East Gizmos, "NEC develops Worlds first retina-display translation Eyeglasses"

[Via Popular Science]

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Brother, NEC look to invade your retinas next year