September 18, 2013

Google Glass: the essentials

Written By Martin Sandhu

After months of anticipation, the first Google Glasses have finally reached the hands of the selected few. You might remember the hype surrounding Project Glass, where developers were put into a lottery to have the privilege of paying $1500 for their own pair of specs, before anyone else. You no longer have to look far to find pictures and reviews of the new technology.

It’s not yet available to the general pubic, but many are speculating that the initial estimate of a 2014 release date may be brought forward to the end of 2013 – just in time for Christmas!

Despite of all the hype, many still don’t understand exactly what Google Glass can do and what its impact could be.

Wearable tech

Our obsession with wearable technology can be traced back a long way; there are countless sci-fi films we could refer to! But this dream is slowly turning into a reality and Google Glass is one of the leaders making this a reality. It aims to free data from desktops, laptops and even mobile devices and place it right in front of your eyes, hands free.

Essentially it’s a camera, display, touchscreen, battery and microphone all built into a rather swish pair of glasses. What this allows you to do is take pictures and videos, search and translate on the go.

The information is displayed in the top right corner of your view, using a prism screen. It’s designed to be seen without obstructing vision, According to Google the display is “the equivalent of a 25-inch high definition screen from eight feet away”.

In-vision data has some obvious benefits, directions become more intuitive, a camera will film and record exactly what you’re seeing and the translation function means you can have instant translation of what is being said to you.

Smartphone pairing
Uses become even more apparent when Google Glass is paired with an Andriod phone or tablet. Not only can tethering be enabled, offering a hands-free Internet connection on the move, but Google Glass can send and receive messages using the built in microphone and voice to text functionality.

As with any new technology, apps will be the key to Google Glass. On top of the built in functionality, Google has already created a number of apps for the technology. Film and photos apps need little explanation and will undoubtedly prove most popular, but a ‘Hang-out’ app that allows users to video call friends and share their view is one already causing waves. Of course there’ll also be a Google Maps app.

Third party apps are being developed, some scarier than others…Apps which allow users to dictate emails and get the latest headlines are overshadowed by those which will help you to identify your friend in a crowd!

Whilst the general release of Google Glass is at least a few months off yet, the exciting possibilities are already starting to be explored. Developing a unique, Google Glass app for your business could certainly be a smart move for the future.