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Meet Olympus' answer to Google Glass : the MEG4.0

Olympus announced its own MEG4.0 ultra-compact wearable display prototype.

The device, which comes as Google is touting its own Project Glass innovation, is seven years in the making. In 2005, Engadget reported that Olympus was the latest company to invest in the wearable display field, which, back then, was considered a preposterous idea.

"Call us in a few years when it's all properly miniaturized and wireless, OK guys?" Engadget joked at the time.

Well, Olympus is calling. Its prototype offers a QVGA 320-by-240 display and Bluetooth connection capabilities, as well as a smartphone hookup.

Olympus's futuristic glasses utilize the imaging company's pupil-division optical system for a see-through display that won't obstruct users' visibility of the outside world. The device also achieves high brightness levels with low power consumption, increasing outdoor clarity, the company said.

Weighing in at 30 grams, the prototype offers about eight hours of visual fun, pared down to two hours if the glasses are in non-stop projection mode, according to a Japanese press release.

The attachable device also comes with a built-in accelerometer, for complete user control that allows the glasses to figure out which way the wearer in facing.

Unlike Google Glass, the current Olympus model does not come with a camera.

Last week, Google showed off its Project Glass at the I/O developer conference and offered pre-orders for the $1,500 Explorer Edition device, which are expected to begin shipping early next year.

While few specifics have been revealed about the Google Glass, the company did announce that the product will come equipped with a built-in camera, a "pretty powerful" processor, plenty of memory, and a touch pad. Project Glass also includes microphones, speakers, multiple radios, sensors, accelerometers, and a compass.