Unistellar massively undercuts Swarowski with its new Envision Smart Binoculars

The smart telescope manufacturer’s first binoculars promise serious AR prowess

Unistellar ENVISION smart binoculars
(Image credit: Unistellar)

2024 will go down in history as the year of augmented reality (AR) binoculars. We caught the first glimpse of the Swarovski Optik AX Visio at CES in January (and reviewed in April). Now, Unistellar, well-known for its smart telescopes, has come out with its take on the concept, the Envision Smart Binoculars.

Like Swarovski’s bins, the Envision is said to overlay contextual information directly onto the natural field of view. However, Unistellar’s model will be able to detect more than just birds and other animals.

The company says the Envision Smart Binoculars connect to a smartphone via a companion app to provide ‘instant access’ to a ‘comprehensive database’ of maps and contextual information.

With four modes to choose from, you can switch between Smart Scouting, Guided Navigation, Shareable Target Lock, and Classic Optical Modes, depending on your adventure or observation.

Smart Scouting Mode creates an overlay 3D map that indicates landmarks, water sources, trails, refuges, and points of interest (POI) during the day.

Guided Navigation Mode will also highlight POIs both day and night and take you on a tour of the terrain or stars around you. This means spotting ‘hidden gem’ stars, comets and starfields at night, and offering a view of sought-after points of interest and ‘improving navigation in complex and unfamiliar terrain’ during the day.

The third mode, Shareable Target-Lock, helps you share the Envision Smart Binoculars experience with others around you. By locking onto a ‘target’ you find in the field of view, you can pass the binoculars to friends, who will be precisely guided to the same target.

Finally, the Classic Optical Mode turns off the AR overlay, transforming the Envision into a pair of classic optical binoculars.

As you can tell, Unistellar is aiming high with the Envision Smart Binoculars, and we’ll have to wait and see how the company’s latest product performs. We’ve been pleased with the brand before (just look at our 5-star Unistellar eVscope 2 review), but the binoculars will have to see and understand more than just the night sky.

Unistellar is launching a Kickstarter campaign to drum up interest in the bins before moving to mass production. Early supporters (first 1,000 units) will be able to get hold of the binoculars for $599, which is $400 less than the final sale price ($999).

Visit Unistellar for more information and to stay updated on the campaign. For more info on binoculars, check out T3’s best binoculars and best birdwatching binoculars roundups.

Matt Kollat
Section Editor | Active

Matt Kollat is a journalist and content creator who works for T3.com and its magazine counterpart as an Active Editor. His areas of expertise include wearables, drones, fitness equipment, nutrition and outdoor gear. He joined T3 in 2019. His byline appears in several publications, including Techradar and Fit&Well, and more. Matt also collaborated with other content creators (e.g. Garage Gym Reviews) and judged many awards, such as the European Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance's ESSNawards. When he isn't working out, running or cycling, you'll find him roaming the countryside and trying out new podcasting and content creation equipment.