By Susan Varano
Google Project Glass first started testing their eye-wear product in April 2012, however, the launch date has been pushed further and further back. According to The Verge, the new product is due for release for developers sometime around the end 2013, with the customer release now scheduled for 2014.
Google glasses are an attempt to make wearable technology mainstream, and is effectively a step up from the smart technology that is available today, providing end users with quicker and easier communication. Even though the idea is not new to tech fans, Google’s rapid growth over the past few years means that this project could actually materialise into something tangible.
So how does Project Glass work? According to a Google blogger, the glasses will probably use a transparent LCD or AMOLED display in order to put information in your line of sight. They are equipped with a camera and a GPS in order to know your location and you can tilt your head to scroll and click on selected information. Recent news revealed that the glasses may be compatible with smart phones (Androids), suggesting the technology also includes Wi-Fi and Bluetooth in order to send information such as pictures and articles. Voice controls will also be a feature on the Google Glasses.
The glasses are designed to be a stand-alone device rather than connected to a phone, and communicate directly with the cloud for fast and accessible communications. Other features include a front-facing camera and a flash, although this is still being tweaked by Google developers.
Some however, argue that these fragile glasses are impractical for the everyday user. Alongside the glasses being flimsy and easy to break, the fact that users will be reading information in their line of sight means that they can be easily distracted. This would create a dangerous situation whilst driving for example.
Another con against the glasses is the fact that millions of people wear vision correction glasses – around 75% of the American population wear some kind of eyewear – and sunglasses are a popular choice during the warmer months. However, Google plans to tackle these issues as they are experimenting with designs which fit over existing glasses in the hopes of selling the glasses as mainstream communication tool. Sceptics are also concerned that as this is a Google product, buyers of the glasses will be inundated with advertisements, which will create of sort of spooky, ‘Big Brother’ type scenario.
At the moment the develop version of the product (traditionally more expensive that the more widely available consumer units) were made available for pre-order for $1500. It is hard to speculate the future success of the Google Glasses until the product goes on the shelves for consumers. Currently people are divided about the new wearable technology so only time will tell whether Google’s new plan will be a good investment for everyone involved. Over the coming year, look on tech sites such as Visopix to see where this story goes.
About the author
Susan Varano is a freelance copywriter from London. Her passions are art, photography, ballet and mango sorbet. When she’s not copy-writing, she enjoys spending time abroad in her villa in Seville practising her photography skills.