Epson's $500 smart glasses are literally powered by your phone

Just plug and play.

Smart glasses have been kicking around for more than half a decade now, so it's a bit jarring when a new model is released and they look, well... ugly. Google has already demonstrated that it's possible to build a pair without bottle-thick lenses and chunky frames, and yet the market's newest arrival, Epson's Moverio BT-30C smart glasses, boast exactly that.

Aesthetics aside, though, Epson's latest offering comes with features that could help give smart glasses the nudge they need to take hold in the consumer market -- at the moment such devices are largely the sole domain of business. The Moverio BT-30C connect with an Android smartphone of Windows PC over USB-C, a plug and play function that mitigates some of the hassle seen in previous iterations with custom controller boxes.

The glasses project up to three apps on three different screens against a transparent background and come with an OLED display for sharp, bright imagery. The glasses also come with a dark lens shade, for a movie-theater experience when streaming videos. Of course, none of these features alone will have consumers lining up for a pair, but their reasonable price tag of $499 will certainly make them a little more enticing, given previous models hit the market at $699. It's not small change, but making smart glasses more affordable will certainly be a guiding principle in the way tech giants approach getting this tech into the mainstream.