Virtual Reality

SwimAR is an high-tech heads-up display for goggles based on LMX-001 holographic waveguide display

Real time feedback for swimmers plugs tech gap in the pool


A product of The Imagination Factory, (London creative engineering and product design studio),
SwimAR was the idea of co-founder, Julian Swan when training for a triathlon. Disconnected from time
when swimming, in contrast with the real-time feedback on the bike and track, he set about looking
for a solution, with his team.


SwimAR attaches to a large range of goggles, giving swimmers a transparent display of their
performance, clear and bright in their line of sight. No more stopping to check times between lengths
or guessing at split times or stroke rate. Data is stored and transferred post swim for analysis.

“It’s a fantastic piece of kit. Probably going to be the go-to device for swimmers both at performance and leisure level,” said Philip Walsh, long distance swimmer. “It’s great,” said Kat Berry, Coach, Challenge Tri Camp. “It’s really clear and it’s interesting to see your split time without having to stop.

So unique to see something when you are swimming. “

Mark Hester, Technical Director on SwimAR, said: “The holographic display from Sony, does not
interfere with a swimmer’s field of view, which is an important feature for us, to avoid eye strain.
Since then we have developed hundreds of potential designs to fit the holographic display to goggles
and have worked closely with swimmers and triathletes, to shape the content and form of SwimAR.”

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“We discovered a huge number of design challenges early on and used our human centred design
approach to overcome these,” said Roger Gray, Design Director on SwimAR. “Swimmers have a
preference for their own goggles so we needed a design that fitted to many different types. It had to
hold fast regardless of tumble turns or stroke and be beautiful, functional and durable. We have been
designing, developing, prototyping, testing and redesigning, to get it right for swimmers.”

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Using Sony’s holographic waveguide display and the creative engineering and design strength of the
Imagination Factory, SwimAR has been in development since 2016, in collaboration with the
swimming community.

The Imagination Factory plans to manufacture a small batch of SwimAR in 2018 on Kickstarter, a global crowdfunding platform. If you’re interested in knowing more about SwimAR availability, take a look at their website.

Create customized augmented reality solutions

The LMX-001 holographic waveguide display allows companies to develop customized hardware and software, for use cases that require high precision and quality. 

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LMX-001 holographic waveguide display for professional solutions

The LMX-001 displays clear graphics and text directly in the field of view of the user. The unit consists of an optical engine that renders the monochrome green graphics, and a holographic waveguide glass plate projecting images in front of the eye.

  • Slim profile: 1 mm*
  • Brightness: up to 2,000 nit
  • Transmittance: > 85%
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The waveguide is extremely thin to ensure maximum brightness and transparency, yet reinforced to meet the quality requirements for professional use.

How to start development with LMX-001?

The LMX-001 Development kit contains all tools and components to get your company started and plan the development all the way to serial production.

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LMX-001 Development resources

  • 3D model files of the display
  • Design guideline for comfortable viewing position
  • Bill of materials for the reference design
  • Controller circuit board design
  • Firmware source code
  • System block diagram
  • Hardware specification for display driver chip
  • Code samples for Android and Linux

LMX-001 Evaluation hardware

  • Monocular display
  • Controller puck

If you’re primarily interested in evaluating the optics and first starting with some prototyping, we could recommend to start with the SmartEyeglass Developer Edition. The SmartEyeglass is a complete set of smart glasses, with integrated camera and a range of sensors, ready for smartphone app development.


Raffaele Schiavullo
the authorRaffaele Schiavullo
ADMINISTRATOR - Senior 3D/Virtual Reality Specialist and Automotive HMI developer - Working in London and "insanely" passionate about technology and its creative applications


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