Google Glass Returns

Google Glass Returns 002

Google Glass Returns

Announced earlier this month, courtesy of the FCC, Google Glass appears to be making its way back into the public eye.  Not even 12 months ago it seemed that Google was retiring the device, but rumors since seem to say that will be returning. If Google Glass returns to the spotlight it will definitely have some upgrades and possibly a new purpose.

Although Google has not actually made the second version Google Glass official, it is possible to find the device in the public records of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).  All devices which contain a transmitter must be submitted for review.  So those who are keen and watch these public announcements diligently, can find devices that might have gone through unnoticed.

So, what does Google have in store for those who seek the new Glass?  Probably one of the top requested features isn’t so much a technological function as much as a practicality.  The Explorer model of Google Glass was not nearly as flexible as this new version, and it was glaringly apparent when one went to stow it.  The first version did not have an articulation points, that is to say it didn’t fold nicely for storage. The new version has this feature.   Other improvements include a larger reflecting screen, that’s the clear plastic block at the end of the device.  And finally, a more refined manner for charging has found its way into this latest model.

According to the reviews by other news organizations, this new Google Glass doesn’t make you look any less geeky, (that’s a good thing if you’re a geek).  Except for the three mentioned features, it hasn’t changed much.  But, the core ideal of a wearable camera that offers almost exactly the viewpoint of the wearer, is still the likely appeal.  Although as the first model was fairly steeply priced, it is likely that this next model may fall into the lap of corporate commerce more than consumers.

 

Google Glass Redux: Project Aura

Project Aura 01

Project Aura is the 2nd coming (of Google Glass)

Google Glass may not have taken off in the way that Google had hoped. But it has taken a segue into another format, that of Project Aura.  FCC filings show that the next product may differ in it’s appearance, slightly from the first model.  There’s nothing so obvious yet, but speculatively there may be less hardware in the 2nd generation.

We’re all very intrigued by the idea of the Google Glass, whatever moniker it dons.  The news surrounding the idea has always been controversial and constant. As biotech and cross-bio tech takes a new step into our lives, we both yearn for it and flee from it.   It is fairly obvious from the media attention, that privacy was a major concern with Google Glass.  On the reverse side however, the mere concept of accessing a first-person perspective is mind-tinglingly fascinating; that it is no longer either a CGI creation or the work of fiction.

The latest filing does not change much from the original Google Glass, but it does with the naming.  Or maybe Project Aura is just the code name?  From the FCC Filing there does not appear to be many changes in the basic structure and appearance of the device, although maybe just a bit more stylish.  The market may have been the change in this case, where Google may consider selling only to businesses, rather than make Aura a consumer product.

Although Google did remove access to the $1500 Google Glass Beta project, it apparent by this recent filing that the idea is far from over.  Google X Labs calls these projects Moon Shots for good reason.  We may not remember all the failed attempts that NASA made for the Moon, because we actually got there, but it did take a great deal of trial and error.  Thank goodness Alphabet (Google) is trying to do these amazing things.

Google Glass price break

 

Google Glass price break 02

It appears that there will soon be a Google Glass price break.  The terms of service for the purchase of Google Glass are changing to include a price difference between current models and the up-and-coming model.

Google has already announced a change to the specifications of Glass, upgrading to 2 GB of Ram, but this new change may bring the price down to something a bit more consumer-friendly.  The new terms were made public on August 19th.

To be perfectly fair Google is offering the difference in the price between what you pay and what the price may be in the near future.  Such an offer is definitely not unlike Google, but rare when offering a new product, to include in the terms.  It is apparent that Google really wants people to take Glass home, happily.

Some of the new text in the terms seems to imply that Google may be making Glass available through wireless carriers.  The text is to state that if you want mobile data connectivity, you will need to secure that through a carrier, via a SIM card.

And finally with this announcement Google is officially removing the “Beta” tag.  This appears to imply the state of the official announcement.  Glass is going out into the public and will be a tool for all.

Credit: Glass Almanac

 

 

A New Google Glass Patent surfaces

new Google Glass Patent

New Google Glass Patent

The new Google Glass patent recently discovered via the watchers of the Patent Office (Glass Almanac), depicts a pair of glasses without the eye projection part.  It appears that Google is intent on making the new set of glasses less annoying to the average user, a feature that might bring it into normalcy.   If it is at possible for the geeks at Google to generate another Moonshot, perhaps this revision is it?

Google Glass appears to yet be ahead of its time.  There is a very distinct dislike of the idea of being in the line of sight of a head-mounted computer.  It may just be the obviousness of Google Glass that is its own bane.  Whereas Smartphones can be pocketed or at least when they are being used it is a bit more apparent to the intent, Glass has never had such ease.

However, if this new revision can stymie the overflow of disgust at either being observed by or the use of a head-mounted computer, it may just begin to grow on the public.  I for one, look forward to the day when computers are as effective as the interface used in the television show Time Trax

What to Expect at Google I/O 2014

Google IO 2014

It’s coming!  The biggest Google event of the year, that which we have all been awaiting (sometimes no so patiently).  We’ve got all the rumors and exciting features of what you can expect to see at Google I/O 2014. Don’t worry if you were not one of the lucky few 6000 who did not get randomly selected, you can still watch from the myriad of live streams that Google will provide.

Android

We’ve been hearing mutterings about Android Silver and version 5 of the OS.  Google has long issued examples of the Nexus phone and tablet line but is taking the idea in a slightly different direction with Android Silver.  You may have purchased a Google Play Experience (GPE) phone and gotten the straight dope OS, the latest updates.  Android Silver will be what the Nexus line was, but via every manufacturer.

Android OS version 5 or lollipop, lemon drop or licorice, will be a tasty treat no matter what it’s called. Although Android 4.4.4 was just released, Google is due for another major release.  This may be a rollout that is associated with other aspects of the OS for different hardware , like…

Android Wear

Since the announcement of Motorola’s round-faced Android Wear watch, the world has been abuzz with excitement.  We sincerely hope to see the new hotness of the Android watches at this Google I/O 2014. So far LG and Motorola have something to show for the labour of the idea.  We’ll just have to wait and see.

Android TV

Google has not had much fortune with the TV-ready devices.  Despite some huge effort by Sony and Logitech the Google TV idea never really flew very well. Google did however knock one out of the park with the Google Chromecast, but can Android TV save Google’s face and give it back control over your TV as well?

Android Auto-Link

With baited breath we will await the announcement of the results of the collaboration of companies in the Open Automotive Alliance that Google thrown together.  We’ve seen what Google can do with phones and tablets, now their brilliance will be available in our vehicles.  Audi, GM, Hyundai, and Honda to name a few will be involved in this partnership to bring the new information management and control to your second favorite place to be.  After all that giant screen in the Tesla S is a modified Android OS, why not every car?

Project Tango

We may not see the full scope of this idea at Google I/O 2014, but at least Google is making an effort to display it.  Microsoft is killing it in the market of tablets and laptops.  Apple is spreading itself out and Google can take the crown with this new idea.  Although it is aimed at developers, the $1000 tablet could be a grand slam (and swag at Google I/O)

Chromebooks

The Chromebook Pixel is a god among men in the market for Chromebooks.  It’s lofty price is just a bit out of  reach for most, but might just be the right idea to bring on change.  But what will Google do to give more options with an inbetweener?  The Chromebook Pixel v.2 will hopefully arise at the Conference

Google Glass,

Google I/O 2013 was mostly talk and software.  Google I/O 2014 is looking to be a smorgasbord of hardware flavors.  This may include Google Glass in the Play Store, but it might also be the early beginnings of Google Glass 2.0.  What does Google have in store for this latest piece of strange tech that is catching the world off-guard?  We will just have to wait until the awesome shows up at Google I/O 2014.