The Times Leader, Wilkes-Barre, Pa., Nick DeLorenzo column [The Times Leader, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.]
(Times Leader (Wilkes-Barre, PA) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Feb. 21--I've written about Google's revolutionary "Project Glass" before, back when it was just a prototype device with only a few minor details released for public consumption. From the looks of things, the revolutionary "smart eyewear" device has come a long way.
In case you missed it, Project Glass is a Google initiative that builds all of the capabilities of a modern smartphone into a wearable device similar to a set of eyeglasses. In fact, photos released by Google have shown "Glass" both integrated into sunglasses and without lenses of any kind. Information is projected into a semi-transparent "heads-up" display in front of the user's right eye, and control is largely based upon voice command.
Glass also incorporates a front-facing camera, so users can record what's going on in their day-to-day lives.
Google has gotten these devices into the hands of app developers and beta testers, along with a select few others, and now we're able to get a better idea of what it will be like to use Glass.
For starters, it looks like the entry price will be around $1,500.
Most of what you're paying for is probably miniaturization, because they've crammed a cellular transmitter, a camera, a processor and memory into a device that's about the size of your little finger.
Glass will be available in black, white or blue, and looking at the product's website (plus.google.com/+projectglass/), Google is making no secret that the device is also intended to make a fashion statement.
As far as utility goes, Google's team has released demo videos showing wearers recording a skydive, recording interviews and the like.
The heads-up display is shown displaying directions, photos, flight information, translations, text messages and even augmented reality content. It shows several examples of people driving while using Glass.
I'm not sure how cellphone laws will apply to Google Glass, but it seems nearly inevitable that some jurisdictions will ban driving while wearing smart eyewear.
Given its potential capabilities, the price tag actually seems fair. This isn't some cobbled-together affair, but rather, it comes across as a logical merging of several fully-mature technologies. I believe Google's Glass might represent the next stage in the evolution of smart devices. In five or 10 years, we might have dispensed with clunky smartphones and moved on to a more wearable, less invasive experience.
That might be an overly optimistic assessment, but it's certainly in line with the direction in which the technology is moving.
Nick DeLorenzo is director of interactive and new media for The Times Leader. Email him at email@example.com.
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