These AI-powered binoculars can identify animals while you're looking at them

 Swarovski Optik AX Visio smart binoculars
(Image credit: Swarovski Optik)

Austrian optical instruments manufacturer Swarovski Optik has unveiled the world’s first smart binoculars at CES 2024 in Las Vegas. 

The high-tech bins can not only double as a digital camera, but they also use AI to swiftly identify a vast range of animal species. So no more frantic flipping through your dog-eared bird-spotting guide out in the field. 

Let’s just hope it can tell the difference between a sharp-shinned hawk and a Cooper’s hawk, otherwise Swarovski Optik is going to be dealing with an awful lot of angry emails off ornery ornithologists.

The Swarovski Optik AX Visio is equipped with an NPU, aka, neural processing unit, aka, an artificial intelligence thingamajig, which the company claims can quickly and reliably identify a wide variety of birds and other animal species.

Weighing just under 1.1kg (39oz), the binoculars offer 10x magnification and a 32mm objective lens, with a field of view of 112m / 1,000m.

The AX Visio can also be used to take photos and record videos (but only in Full HD resolution). The resolution here is specified as 4,208 x 3,120 pixels or 13 megapixels.

Using a smartphone app, images and photos can also be uploaded to a phone for image management.

You can even share observations live thanks to a live view function, just the thing you need to convince skeptical colleagues that you really have spotted a California condor.

The battery life of the AX Visio is specified as up to 15 hours in normal operation, two hours in intensive use. There’s also a compass function which displays the tilt angle too.

The AX Visio is now available at a price of $4,799