Friday, August 17, 2018 by David Williams
Oakley has come out as an unlikely innovator in the world of eyewear, as it debuted its new Prizm React goggles which allow users to change the level of darkness on the lenses through the quick push of a button. It’s meant primarily for use when skiing in snowy mountaintops, but you can probably imagine the many possibilities that lie ahead with such an interesting piece of technology.
According to a report on the newest pair from Oakley, the tech behind the Prizm React has been in development for quite some time now. Its highlight feature — the ability to change the darkness levels of the lens — is something that’s uniquely available to it and won’t be found in other models in Oakley’s lineup.
The creation of the Prizm React was motivated by requests from customers who wanted something that “looks normal” but still has all of the necessary useful technology on it along with a reasonable price tag. As such, the Oakley Prizm React doesn’t have any external pieces, and all of its extra features are integrated within it. That includes the button through which you can adjust the darkness levels on the lenses and the long-lasting battery.
According to Nico Collombatto, a field marketing representative at Oakley, the Prizm React goggles represent only one part of the company’s ongoing effort to implement such a useful technology. Referring to the need for the Prizm React, he said: “[People] were asking for a goggle that looks normal — without all the external pieces — but has all the technology at a good price point. I think we hit that this year. And we are all really excited about the Prizm React.”
“Rather than having just a grey lens, Prizm brings down light overall,” explained Collombatto further, referring to the ability of the Prizm React to alter a wearer’s vision. “If you walk outside without glasses, you have 100 percent light transmission. When we turn a grey lens on, all the light drops to about 20 percent, making everything darker.” Evidently, that was the idea that the company had for the functionality they needed to put into goggles. And now the public can finally benefit from it.
It is said that the lenses on the Prizm React takes about seven seconds to go from fully transparent to dark, and another seven seconds to go from dark to light again. Its built-in battery is rated for up to one month with every charge, and recharging it takes about two hours by using the internal USB charging port that can be found in the frame of the goggles.
Oakley designed the Prizm React to be easy to operate even while using thick, heavy gloves. To that end, the company equipped it with a button that’s large enough to press and initiate the lens filter transition without having to fumble through various moving parts. “The size of the button to transition the lens filter is affixed to the outside of the frame and is large enough to “smack” to instantly change […] when you are skiing,” Collombatto explained. “No need to take off your gloves. You can easily access the button.”
For now, Oakley’s electronically filtered lens technology is limited in availability and use through the Prizm React model, but perhaps after some time, they could also figure out more interesting applications for other activities or other fields. As Collombatto promises, the Oakley R&D department is currently “looking at where we can implement Prizm technology.” After all, skiing isn’t the only sport that can benefit from a little shade from the sun.
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