Looking to the future: Google Glasses review


My GGs appointment
11am on Friday 10 October was a special day for me and not just because it was my Granny’s birthday who had the easiest to remember birthdate of 10.10.10!

I like my gadgets and this was the day I road-tested Google Glasses (GG) having had a previous appointment cancelled. For those of you that have not been to Kings Cross (view the development) recently it is fast becoming a really vibrant area with water fountains in Granary Square to square trees (very similar to the original BBC Media Village trees), great coffee with lots going on.

On arriving at Glass Basecamp in London I’m met by Dea, a Hungarian lady who is already donning a pair of Google Glasses. The showroom has about fifteen customers and eight Google Glass experts.

Immediately I’m given a demo pair to try on – available in 5 colours and a variety of frames.

What they do
The basics of how to switch it on, take a photo and adjust the viewer are given and then how to connect to the wifi or phone hots spots. Straightaway I’m saying ‘Ok Glass’, Get directions to’ and then the location of my next meeting at near Bank Tube station. Directions by car, walking or public transport are presented and then as instructed by Dea I walk towards the door and further directions are given.

GG can be controlled via Voice, Touch, Tilting the head and Blinking. I tried the first three, with Voice being a winner. It’s far better than voice recognition on a phone and it has, since my appointment, become more accustomed to my voice than the higher-pitched voices in our offices. Images and film are easy to take and can be shared with once synched with your contacts. Translations are a useful feature, having taken a photo of German road sign it translates German into English.

So I was becoming impressed with the GGs until I hear the price of £1,000. The GGs are by Google’s admission a beta version as part of the Google Explore Programmer and they are collating masses of user data to enhance the next iteration. Very clever of Google to get a live data set to pay to be in their experiment. Having got over the price I clarified the returns policy and decided to purchase a pair to share with the team and clients.

User feedback
Most people that have acted as guinea pigs here are curiously interested, more impressed than they thought they would be but would not wear them in public. Most would not pay £1,000 per pair but we all know this will be reduced for them to become mainstream.

Until they are visually less intrusive, physically smaller in the case and connectivity is better I think they won’t become mainstream. However, these negatives will surely be addressed with the next iteration and that’s when I feel they will become mainstream.

…and finally where are they now?
Well the Glasses have been returned as I believe there will be a better pair out shortly – so watch this space for the next update.


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Henry is an experienced online communications consultant who has worked with a number of FTSE 100/250 companies, helping them to communicate with their key stakeholders whilst maximising their use of data to generate informed decisions and increased engagement with customers. He heads up our Digital and Corporate Reporting teams, and is interested in all gadgets that make life simpler. Recent projects include an international product launch across Europe, Middle East & Africa as well as leading a large data integration project in the UK. A fan of all sports, he is often seen supporting the Exeter Chiefs most weekends but without the headdress and tomahawk!


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