In a technology-driven world where the desire for immersive and interactive experiences is growing, a startup named Sightful is pioneering a new kind of laptop, the Spacetop. Co-founded by ex-Magic Leap executives Tamir Berliner and Tomer Kahan, Sightful has introduced a laptop that swaps out the traditional screen for tethered AR glasses, creating floating virtual windows for a whole new computing experience.
A New Way to View Your Workspace:
Spacetop comes with a slightly modified version of Nreal Light AR glasses, which are permanently tethered and conveniently slot into grooves above the keyboard when not in use. The device’s lid is specially designed to securely dock the glasses, even when it is closed, ensuring the safety and longevity of the glasses.
With Sightful’s proprietary Spacetop OS, users can open large floating web browser windows around them, replacing the need to hunch over a traditional laptop screen and continuously switch through tabs. However, it’s important to note that the limited field of view of current transparent AR optics implies that all these floating windows will be visible simultaneously only when they’re placed meters away. This necessitates more head-turning and content-recalling than with physical monitors, a current tradeoff with transparent AR technology.
Technical Specifications and Performance:
At its core, Spacetop is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865, which also forms the basis for the Snapdragon XR2 chipset, used in popular headsets like Quest 2 and Pico 4. Despite having a larger battery and cooling area enabling a CPU clock speed of 3.1 GHz, users should anticipate performance closer to a Chromebook than a high-end laptop. The device also features 8GB of RAM and 256GB of onboard storage.
Connectivity and Battery Life:
Spacetop offers Wi-Fi 6 support for home or office use, alongside a 5G modem for seamless use on the go, provided you have a SIM card with an active plan from a carrier. Sightful promises a battery life exceeding 5 hours, with USB-C PD charging that can power the device from 0% to 85% in under 2 hours. The device also features two USB-C ports for charging or outputting a 1080p mirror to a physical DisplayPort monitor, and a 5-megapixel webcam above the keyboard for video calls.
Pricing and Availability:
Sightful is currently offering 1000 pre-launch units of Spacetop Early Access priced at $2000, with shipping to begin from July. The company emphasizes that feedback from these early users will significantly shape the hardware and software experience of Spacetop, directly influencing the launch of the Spacetop V1.
Spacetop represents an exciting advancement in the blend of AR technology with traditional computing devices. While some challenges like field of view limitations still persist, it’s clear that innovative solutions like Spacetop are pushing the envelope for what’s possible in the field of digital interaction and accessibility.