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Daqri, known for its business-focused augmented reality headsets, is reportedly shutting down.TechCrunchwrote yesterdaythat the company’s headquarters had been shuttered and many employees had been laid off, citing reports from former staff members. An email also apparently stated that Daqri is trying to sell its assets in preparation for a shutdown.
Road to VRelaborated on the email, which said that the company would end its Smart Glasses and Worksense programs by the end of September. The asset sale would “put an end to [Daqri’s] industrial wearables business and begin the wind down of the company.” Daqri didn’t immediately respond to an email requesting comment.
Daqri would be only the latest augmented reality hardware company to go under. The list includes Microsoft HoloLens competitor Meta, whichsold its assetsin January after a long financial struggle, although the technology may be resuscitatedat a new company. AR glasses companyOsterhout Design Group collapsedaround the same time. Intel alsoabandoned a smart glasses projectin 2018. Remaining hardware companies include Magic Leap, North, and Vuzix, as well as Microsoft’s HoloLens division.
Daqri was founded in 2010 andreleased an AR “smart helmet”in 2016. The helmet wasdesigned to makeindustrial jobs easier by overlaying instructions on complex equipment — arelatively common usefor AR headsets. The company followed up with a set of smaller$4,995 smart glassesfor professionals in 2017.The Wall Street Journalreportedthat year that Daqri had raised $275 million in venture capital.
However, oneTechCrunchsource said that the company had faced difficulty actually selling the glasses — in part because of “difficulties in training workers to use the futuristic hardware.”