A Look into Google Augmented Reality Glasses
First phones came with wires, then they became cordless, and then we finally had mobile phones. Those mobile phones then became smart phones and then their size began to enlarge. Walk in a street and you will see people walking with their heads down. You could only wish if that was out of sadness.
The world is so addicted to checking their Facebook notifications, clicking and uploading pictures on Instagram, and texting messages on different messengers that we do not have the time to look up while walking or traveling or anywhere. So now after the age of smart phones, the world is quite ready to see a new advancement in technology – the Google Augmented Reality Glasses. This is Google’s wearable technology that can literally be worn around the eyes like a pair of spectacles. Google Glass is a headset which has a projected display, a data connection and a camera. This wearable display technology has the potential to revolutionize the mobile industry.
So, what all does the Google glass comprises of? What is it made of and what are its benefits? What are the things that might not work for the users? Here is our review on Google Glasses’ ‘augmented reality’.
What Do Google Glasses Really Do?
This technological invention pulls together Google’s extensive armory of location-specific, mobile and real-time services, including navigation, web search, music, etc., into a pair of smart-looking Android-based spectacles and presents complete information before the user on a small screen placed at the edge of their field of vision. It provides the user with several options like “get directions to”, “record a video,” “hang out with”, “make a call to”, or “send a message to” choose from. The user can use voice control mechanism to interact with the device.
Google Glass Specifications – What’s Inside All the Hardware?
Here is a quick overview on the various good things that you can expect from the Google Glasses –
- Storage and Performance – Google Glass is loaded with a TI OMAP 4430 processor. It has 1GB of RAM and 16GB storage. Models with 12GB storage are also available. Your content will automatically get pushed to your Google+ account. You also have the option of taking it through the micro-USB port. This micro-USB port is also from where Google Glass gets charged.
- Battery – Talking about the battery, the battery life is pretty disappointing and the battery size is unknown too. For a device that has to provide you a convenience of forgetting about having it on your face, the poor battery life is quite a disappointment.
- Connectivity – A good thing about Glass is it being an independent device that can work on any Wi-Fi connection as long as you are within the Wi-Fi’s range.
- Display – The display is not of LED or LCD standard and in bright sunlight it gets a little worse, though the contrast is appreciable.
- Installing Google Glass – It is quite easy to install Google Glass. All you have to do is download the MyGlass app on your phone, select a certain number of choices to pair a headset. This will enable Bluetooth and then a huge code will appear, then you will only have to hold that code right in front of your face and voila! You will have Glass signed into your account. It might take you a little bit of time to have the basics grow on you but after that, the usage and working is fairly easy.
- Operating Google Glasses – The one thing that you have to remember about Glass is that while operating, you will have to start your commands with “Okay, Glass”. You will also be required to either tilt your head your head or tap the side so that it starts taking your commands. Then you can ask it to take pictures, record videos, Google any information and look for the nearest hangout options.
- Camera – It has a 5 megapixel camera and that is all that can be said about it since the quality of the camera is not much above average. The quality of the picture mostly depends upon the kind of lighting in that particular place.
Why Should I Use Google Glasses?
The applications of Google augmented reality glasses could be infinite. Here are a view reasons why you would want to use a Google Glass –
- If you don’t have enough time to skim through the daily news in the morning, just put on your ‘reality glasses’ as you eat your breakfast and get the latest news about what’s happening around the globe.
- If you are getting late for office and worried that you will get stuck in traffic, let the map on your Google Glass show you the roads where you might find heavy traffic on your way to work.
- On your drive to office, you pass your favorite shop or restaurant and the latest discounts and offers pop up on your Google Glass screen.
- When meeting people in office or outside, you can frame them in your screen and view their Google+ profiles.
- Listen to your favorite music on the go while keeping yourself available for a steady stream of sponsored messages, phone calls, and targeted adverts.
- Trying out a new recipe? Put your glasses on and have the recipe video right in front of you as you cook.
There are several other ways in which your Google Glasses can make your world a lot easier for you.
Reasons Google Glasses Might Fail
Well, there are several security, ethical, and privacy concerns in regards with the use of Google Glasses that might become the reasons for its failure in future. Questions are also being raised on the convenience of wearing a gadget around the eyes. Let’s have a quick overview on why we think the future of this technology is not very promising –
Is It Really Convenient To Wear a Gadget Around the Eyes?
Google Glass is the kind of device that can very easily be either loved or hated when it comes to how it looks. The band that surrounds the eyes and forms the frame is made up of plastic-backed titanium. This structure is thinner in the middle and grows thicker at the sides making the frame stronger and more comfortable. Like any other spectacle frame, this frame has two titanium made arcs with silicon pads at the end to make it stay on our noses. Though these will slide off whenever we are in a weather that is far from being dry.
The frame is the basic physical structure that supports the two wired devices. One is present at the side, behind your ear and the other in the front. The assembly that is behind your ear contains the battery and the bone conductive speaker and the device in the front has the camera, display assembly and processor.
It is quite easy to look like a character that left the sets of a sci-fi film once you have the Glass on. Though putting the Glass on is a bit of a task. It requires the front device to be settled a little above than your right eye so that you do not get distracted. But you might have to go through a lot of fiddling to achieve the perfect position. Also, it will be a convenient device for the people who are used to wearing glasses in general but for those who are not used to wearing glasses; this device might take time to grow on them.
The ones already wearing glasses might also face difficulties in getting Google Glass adjusted on their frames. It might not be comfortable at all. There are a few things that you can modify in Glass. The wake angle and the other thing that you can modify is the ability to enable and disable the head detection which anyway turns off the moment you remove it.
Taking the Glass off can be an inconvenient process too. The titanium frame does provide a lot of flexibility but still it is not something you can hang around the neck of your t-shirt. The refractive display and its fragility make the case worse.
Privacy and Security Related Google Glass Blues
This new wearable display technology does come with a lot of privacy concerns. People are being skeptical about being photographed or filmed by people wearing these Glasses. One of the biggest mistakes Google has done is not including a red light that would indicate when recording is taking place. This means, Glass users can record videos and take pictures without letting the subject know. This is a huge concern that comes with this highly advanced device and should be taken into consideration when it comes out for the general public because this can create a lot of issues among the users.
Also, as wearing Google Glasses will be no different than wearing a mobile phone, there is a possibility that Google will very well know about your whereabouts and what you are seeing. It might be a clear threat to a person’s privacy and security. When reading a newspaper, Ezine or watching a video, Google might have the liberty to overlay the given ads with their own ads.
Google Glass Release Date and Price
The augmented reality Google Glasses are expected to be available in the market in 2014 for a reasonable price of around $200-$500. But, we need to wait until Google announces its specific pricing. People who already managed to get their hands on this much-awaited device have spent a whopping price of over $1000.
This device is definitely a leap in wearable display technology but it does come with baggage. It has good features but all of those features have some negative points attached to it. Now all we can do is to simply wait for the general public response when the Google Augmented Reality Glasses come out in 2014.