Google is to end sales of its Explorer Glass hardware reports the BBC.
Google is to end the its ‘beta’ sale of their Glass hardware, instead focusing on ‘future versions go Glass’. The Explorer version of Glass was a first attempt by Google at creating wearable smart glasses and launched in Summer 2013 for US consumers to buy.
Glass Explorer gave the consumer the chance to purchase a first of a kind product for $1,500 or £990. The sales programme was only expanded to the UK last summer, with many predicting that it would be swiftly followed by a commercial roll out.
From next week Google will stop the sale of Google Glass. This is also followed by a change of home for the development team, away from the Google X division, and as a separate undertaking with Ivy Ross as manager.
Both the team and Ross will report to Tony Fadell, who is head of the automation business Nest; which was recently acquired by Google. Fadell commented on the move, supporting Google Glass as a ‘future product’ noting how it had “broken ground and allowed us to learn what’s important to consumers and enterprises alike”.
It’s been far from a smooth ride for Google’s Glass. It’s met fierce opposition from privacy campaigners, who question the ability to film people unknowingly in public and share such data instantly.
It has been banned in most UK cinemas on the grounds of copyright protection, several restaurant chains have also dismissed Glass as a tool to ruin the ambience. Glass has received praise from certain industries, health care being one of them. Where health professionals have utilised the ability to view patient records and better diagnose patients using Glass. It’s the future.
Glass was heralded as a new beginning of wearable smart technology. In many ways it started the wearable revolution, and made it main stream. However, as with similar products, Google has failed to yet overcome the privacy concerns and win over all of society. At the moment, Google is playing on the development of newer versions of Glass, but its future isn’t entirely certain. For the moment, Glass isn’t going much further; and little is known. But what we do know, is that for Google to be successful with Glass – it will have to tackle these uncertainties in society.