Project Glass has revealed almost a year ago and since then Google has made tremendous steps, bringing Glass from a moonshot project to an alpha consumer product.
As the move to a full consumer launch grows closer, we are starting to see how Google Glass can become an intriguing part of your day to day life, and removes many barriers mobile phones put up.
Google Glass: The Future
Underneath the tenderly wrapped glasses, there is some common technology we would find in a mobile phone, mixed in with some really exciting new components bringing Glass to life.
Google has not made a full specification sheet on Google Glass, but given the project is one of the first in augmented eyewear, we can see why the company will be keeping their technology to themselves.
Inside Google Glass
Google Glass is inventive not just because it is one of the first augmented eyewear products to hopefully be mass-produced, but because the design of Google Glass is so slim you question where they put all the components.
However, with mobile phones getting slimmer, Google has been able to take these small boards and units, to make an overall sleek and stylish design, even if it is a bit florid right now.
The battery acts as a holder for the glasses, and we suspect and hope Google Glass will last a full day without running out of juice. On the front, the camera, speaker, visual overlay, microphone, and CPU sits, this is all packed into a small area.
We expect the CPU to match common top-tier CPUs in smartphones, although with the slightly less heavy software on Google Glass they may go for a smaller and slower unit.
The visual overlay displays Google’s user interface into your eye. It will be pushed to the top right, until you open an application when it will push to the middle of your eye.
Google Glass will have a microphone and speaker for the user to speak and listen. Google may add some headphones with a microphone to allow users to speak in public without everyone hearing the conversation.
Applications & SDK
As this is a Google product, the only applications being shown off on advertisements are Google’s home brand services. This does give a good idea of what the user interface will look like, or at least, what Google want app interfaces to look like.
When using an app on Google Glass, a half-transparent window will appear in the center of the user’s eye. This will display relevant information, for example, when Google Maps is open it will give you turn-by-turn directions, instead of a full interface displaying different routes and other optional features.
The user can subtract the window to the right corner, and this may be done automatically in some cases. From what we know, only one app can be opened or seen at a time. With the microphone, it may be simple to open other apps, simply by saying a command “open -app-“.
From what we know, Google will allow developers to make apps for them, but more restrictions will be added for adding apps to the store. We are unsure how Google will market these apps, although the common way is to add a store into the operating system.
The SDK for the apps has already been made available and tester units have been sent out to some developers. A path has already said they have worked on an app and other mobile-centric companies will be quick to push their application to the store.
Modern Day Usage
One of the most compelling features is the photo and video capture, as it will be the first person and allow users to not be constrained by a phone or camera. It will always be there, and taking a photo is as easy as saying: “Okay Glass, take a photo”.
Google seems to be developing an artificial intelligence so personal with the user it becomes second nature to use it for day to day activities. This is Google Now, and it will be integrated into Google Glass.
What this means is the personal connection between Google and the user becomes much stronger, with the user getting notifications about flights, meetings and other activities straight to their eye.
With Gmail, Maps, Search, Calendar, Drive and other services, Google will help the user get through the day through Google services. This integrated solution works in Google’s favor immensely.
This is just the start though, with Google opening the platform to developers, we may see some huge new developments in augmented eyewear and how it can be used in the world.
As Google Glass gets closer to launch, more companies and public places are banning the eyewear device, either because it has technologies to allow photo tagging or because it can video someone without them noticing.
Bars, restaurants, and even strip clubs are now getting on the back of the anti-Glass movement, banning the eyewear from being used in their places.
For now, this just means Google Glass will not be allowed in certain areas, you can still use it on the streets, although you may get a few weird looks.
In moving forward with technology, there will always be barriers and some people are opposed to these changes. Some people believe Google shouldn’t have such a dominant role in our future.
The problem is, as Glass is such a genius product, maybe we should allow Google to lead the future ship, just for a few moments, and see what amazing creations they can procure. If you really hate the product, don’t buy it, simple.
If you want to check it more features and videos, view them at Google Glass’ website.