Dustin Sutton is creating a technology that could greatly benefit golfers.
San Diego Business Journal reports the commercial real estate business owner and broker plans to bring augmented reality (AR) enhanced smart glasses to market through his newly established company, RangEZ.
He aims for the product to launch in the fourth quarter of 2024, specifically around the holiday season, per the report.
“Our mission is to revolutionize the golfing experience by integrating cutting-edge technology directly into the player’s field of view,” Sutton told the outlet. “By merging technology and sport, we aim to create a more immersive and informed golfing experience.”
The inspiration for the technology organically formed while golfing with friends and colleagues on the Goat Hill Park Golf Course in Oceanside, CA. They were all using different tactics to gauge distances. However, there was one commonality — they were all wearing sunglasses.
“As we played, I noticed the varied methods we used to gauge distances,” Sutton explained to the outlet. “My friend employed a rangefinder, while I relied on an app, all of us donning sunglasses under the sun. This observation led me to question, ‘Is there a pair of golf sunglasses that can display this data directly on the lenses?’ Intrigued by the idea of combining convenience and technology, I envisioned a product that none of us had seen or heard of before.”
Through research and collaboration with professionals, including law firm Buchalter, local nonprofit San Diego Sport Innovators, and JB Morch, director of U.S. Operations for outerspace design, Sutton was able to create a product design, secure a provisional patent, and establish a C corporation.
“Dustin and I discussed the technical aspects of his product idea, but also the steps that would be required to get from an idea to a product,” Morch explained, according to San Diego Business Journal. “We talked about making sure that the product was simple, lovable and complete. We discussed the need for technical expertise on his team, solid market analysis, and planning a phased project that would start with uncovering the risks of his idea and making sure those were solvable with today’s technology.”
Progress has been made as Sutton also shared the steps taken since making his observation on the golf course.
“Over the past seven months, this journey has transformed from a mere idea into a tangible pursuit,” Sutton said, per the outlet. “I’ve achieved a preliminary design, secured a provisional patent, established a C-corp, and engaged with a part-time CFO to guide the financial structure. Now, I’m moving forward full steam, diving into the development of the prototype with a clear vision and determined spirit.”
Sutton appears optimistic for the road ahead and hopes RangEZ can break into a pool of nearly 80 million golf fans and professionals with the smart glasses that aim to offer real-time and hands- free course data, analytics, and the ability to enhance gameplay strategy.
At this moment, the venture is mostly bootstrapped, with aid from family and friends.
Looking ahead, Sutton hopes to secure outside investments.
“We’re positioned to expand our funding sources as we move into more substantial development and market preparation phases,” Sutton explained to San Diego Business Journal. “We are anticipating launching a pre-seed funding round in early 2024 to accelerate our development, finalize our product prototype and begin go-to-market strategies.”