Head Mounted Display (HMD) - How businesses benefit from smart glasses

Head-mounted displays are revolutionizing the world of work. Especially in production, maintenance and logistics, the demand for smart work glasses has increased rapidly in recent years. But how do head-mounted displays work? What advantages do they offer and how can the glasses be used to add value? An overview by ALEGER.

Smart Maintenance is one of the top AR application areas in the industry

What is a Head Mounted Display?

Head Mounted Displays, also called Head Mounted Tablets, are display devices that are adjusted directly in front of one or both of the wearer’s eyes using a head mount. In this way, digital content is superimposed on his field of vision. Usually, a camera is integrated so that the wearer can film his field of view and share it via digital channels. Sometimes the terms head-up display glasses or just display glasses are used.

A distinction is made between monocular and binocular head-mounted displays.

Monocular Head Mounted Displays

Monocular head-mounted displays are commonly used in industry, where the display is positioned in front of the left or right eye using a head frame or helmet, allowing the other eye to maintain a clear view of the environment.

Binocular Head Mounted Displays

In binocular head-mounted displays, the display is located in front of both eyes. A distinction is made here between VR and AR glasses.

With VR goggles, the user puts on a head display that completely shields them from the environment. He only perceives the content that is shown to him on the displays of the glasses. These glasses are common in simulation training or the gaming scene.

Another and for the work context more relevant implementation of binocular head mounted displays are Smart Glasses and Mixed Reality Glasses , that project digital content into the real environment. The lenses of the glasses are initially transparent so that the user can see the surroundings through them normally. Digital information is only faded in when required.

Colloquially, the term data glasses and smart glasses isusually usedforall glasses with a display, whether VR glasses or AR glasses.

Professional maintenance with augmented reality

Head Mounted Display: Functionality and areas of application

Head Mounted Displays are equipped with their own operating system, which is built into the head mount. The user interfaces of the glasses with camera resemble those of a smartphone. In fact, the most common head-mounted displays run an Android operating system. The user controls the apps via voice input.

The application is conceivable in many industries from mechanical engineering, logistics, health care to crafts, support and manufacturing. To date, companies have used head-mounted displays primarily for three deployment scenarios.

Retrieve instructions & complete checklists

Instead of carrying pages of documents or checklists with them, users can use voice commands to search through documents such as service manuals or data sheets and have relevant passages displayed in their field of vision. This function is particularly important in the maintenance and Maintenance practical, as the employee does not have to interrupt his work. He doesn’t have to pull out a clipboard or grab his tablet to fill out checklists. A simple voice prompt is all that is needed to retrieve or enter data via the glasses.

Learn more about maintenance here

Remote Support & Training

Especially in the Remote maintenance head mounted displays have two major advantages:

Until now, when young technicians go on their first assignments, they have been on their own. With the help of head-mounted displays, they can easily get support from experienced colleagues on difficult cases by sharing their field of view via data glasses and being guided through the work process.

The same applies when companies need support from the manufacturer for the maintenance of their machines: They can simply connect a technician via the data goggles. There are no costs for the expert’s journey. A production standstill can be remedied much faster and the financial damage minimized.

Want to learn more about the benefits of remote maintenance with AR?


The integrated camera of the head-mounted tablet allows wearers to scan QR codes and barcodes. This function is increasingly used in goods receiving and logistics. In this way, the picking effort can be reduced to a fraction of the previous time. For example, DHL achieved a 25% speed-up in goods removal with the introduction of head-mounted %.. Since Coca-Cola started using head-mounted tablets, picking has achieved 99. %.accuracy.

Further fields of application for head mounted displays

The technical possibilities of head-mounted tablets open up many other areas of application for companies. Application areas For example, in ticket control or security screening, when IDs and identities can be checked “in passing” by camera, or in healthcare, when doctors literally keep an eye on the medical record next to their patient or train challenging surgeries with Augmented reality training.

Learn more about AR application areas in industry here.

Head Mounted Displays: Models for the industry


The Head Mounted Display HMT-1 of the company Realwear is optimized for industrial use. It impresses with a high wearing comfort, long battery runtimes and a very good camera. Bhe data goggles can be used without restriction in extreme temperatures from -20° C to +50° C, and they can withstand drops from heights of up to two meters without damage. Another special feature: The goggles are optionally available with ATEX certification. This means that nothing stands in the way of using head-mounted displays even in potentially explosive atmospheres.

Technical specifications:

  • Battery: 4-5 hours (depending on application)
  • Camera: 16 megapixels
  • Interaction: voice control
  • Zoom: 5X
  • Operating system: Android 6.0

Google Glass Enterprise 2 Edition

The latest model Google Glass Enterprise comes in the usual slim design, but the hardware has been upgraded compared to the predecessor. The head-mounted display does not come close to the performance of the HMT-1, but the inner values are impressive and are more than sufficient for many applications. One plus point of Google Glass: its attractive price.

Technical specifications:

  • Camera: 8 megapixel
  • Interaction: Touch
  • Internal memory: 32 GB
  • Weight: 64 gram
  • Operating system: Android
Selected AR glasses can also be used in Ex zones

Advantages of Head Mounted Displays

Head Mounted Displays speed up workflows, increase safety and save companies significant costs.

Higher security

Previously, maintenance staff had to interrupt their work to look up information. Some held the smartphone in one hand while trying to continue the repair one-handed. This is not only ineffective, but also increases the risk of mistakes and injuries. With head-mounted displays, employees can access relevant content with a glance and a few voice commands, while still having both hands free to work on the machine.

Faster workflows

Employees in the field don’t have to boot up their laptops and connect to the Internet, but can access important information at any time with just a few words. Calls to colleagues can also be eliminated in many cases.

Complex technical systems and equipment are in operation in more and more companies. When malfunctions and failures occur, head-mounted displays can partially replace the field service of technicians: Employees from the company show the problem to the expert connected via video call using a camera, and the expert can guide them remotely through the repair process step by step. Outdoor use can be omitted. Problems can be solved faster and downtimes of machines and plants can be minimized.

More on the topic:

Lower costs

The investment in head-mounted tablets has paid for itself in a short time – in every application scenario.

In remote support, travel costs for technicians are eliminated; in logistics, the productivity of individual employees increases, while personnel requirements decrease. During maintenance, the number of faults is reduced to almost zero, so that repeat service visits are no longer necessary, production can run without interruptions, and accidents with consequential costs are avoided.

The option of instructing skilled workers via head-mounted tablets also saves costs, as young colleagues can go out into the field on their own earlier.

Conclusion: Versatile device for higher productivity

In the future, head-mounted displays will be part of everyday business life and will simplify collaboration between people and between man and machine. Not all possible applications have been explored yet, but where data glasses are used, the economic benefits are enormous.

It is therefore worthwhile for companies to introduce head-mounted displays now. As pioneers, they are gaining an important competitive advantage before data glasses become the new corporate norm.

We at ALEGER will be happy to assist you in selecting the right head mounted displays and help you with the implementation.

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