If you've been following the tech industry lately, you've no doubt heard of Google Glass. (Many of us have made the mistake of calling them “Google Glasses;” after all, they look like a pair of spectacles. But Google reminds us often that it's “Google Glass,” singular.) Google's counting on their new gadget to be the vanguard for wearable augmented reality. Though it hasn't been released to the general public yet, the press surrounding it has been getting a lot of attention.
Basically, when you wear Google Glass, the upper-right quadrant of your field of vision is overlaid with computer-generated graphics. With the built-in microphone and camera, you can take snapshots, get information about pretty much whatever you look at, and can summon up directions to where you need to go. Among other functions that are planned to be available are teleconference functionality (where you can not only share voice and data, but can show your friends what you see in real time) and email capability. It should be noted that Google Glass itself does not include telephone or GPS in the gadget itself, but it can be paired with a smartphone in order for the goggles to perform those functions. Tech Radar offers an in-depth look at Google Glass' tech here.
Google, of course, is gung-ho about their new invention; however, some valid issues have been raised about Google Glass by folks who've been able to sample and test it. Most of these points revolve around the issue of privacy—both that of the wearer and the people they encounter. For example, the voyeuristic and invasive potential of Google Glass is troubling to some. The user doesn't have to hold up a camera or smartphone to take a picture, and the person being photographed has no indication it's happening. On the flip side of that coin, some testers have found the device to be easily hacked—so outsider access to sensitive information may be a little too easy for comfort.The Guardian has an article that addresses these concerns in detail, adding, “As the man said, technology can be both good and bad—but it's never neutral.”
In the course of our research, we've found that the general consensus among industry experts at this time is that Google Glass will ultimately prove to be an interesting tech toy, but not a revolutionary game-changing computing device.
So, will there eventually be mobile apps created for Google Glass? Going by the wording of that question specifically, no. For you see, there already are apps for it; developers aren't waiting for the device to be released before creating apps for Google Glass (developers were among those who got the first look at the gadget, so they've been able to code for it specifically). From news and sports updates to social media to photo filtering and sharing, apps have already been crafted to work with Google Glass; CNN, the New York Times, Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr are already on board, among many others. For a comprehensive listing of both the built-in and third-party apps that exist for Google Glass, we highly recommend this article from The Verge. You can bet as soon as Google Glass is introduced into public circulation, the number of apps for it will skyrocket exponentially.
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