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What Is Google Glass? Features, Specs and How To Get One

Updated on April 20, 2014
susi10 profile image

Susan is a science geek, and if that wasn't enough, she gets all nerdy over technology too. She is also a writer too.

Is Google Glass The Future of Technology?

This is the Google Glass Explorer Edition.
This is the Google Glass Explorer Edition. | Source

Status

It was named Project Glass in the research and development sector of Google and was hoped to become a mass made product which could be enjoyed by thousands of consumers across the globe.

Now this dream is becoming a reality as Google launch their Explorer Program enabling consumers to compete for the chance to receive a Google Glass (once they paid the $1500 fee and provided they live in the US.

What Is Google Glass?

Google glass is a wearable computer which is worn on the eyes. It has a hands-free smartphone format with taking pictures, going on the internet and more through controlling it with your voice. It consists of a glass screen which looks like a screen in the corner of the users eye, designed in a non-distracting way. The body of Google Glass is made of a bendable plastic available in five colours which will be described below.

Google Glass can be controlled using your voice or through a touchpad on the side of the glasses. It has many functions allowing you to do the following:

  • Take a picture or record a video of 10 seconds
  • Get directions for wherever you need to go
  • Share your images or go on Google+
  • Get real-time information about virtually everything, airplane flights, matches etc.
  • Search on Google and get real-time facts about what you see.
  • You can translate your voice into any language.

What You See On Google Glass

This is the screen which users see through their Google Glass.
This is the screen which users see through their Google Glass. | Source

How Do You Use Google Glass?

Google Glass is hands free so you can control Glass with your voice. To begin, users can either tilt their head slightly at 300 or say 'OK Glass'. This turns on Glass and it is now ready to do some commands. You can then say 'Take a picture' to take a picture and so forth. You can hangout with others through Google+ so I you want to, you just say: 'Hangout with ...'.

Or if you aren't so keen on talking to an electronic gadget in public, you can use a touchpad as a side scroll on the side of Glass.

Body Of Google Glass: Shape, Weight and Colors

Google have designed Glass so that it would be light and flexible as stated on their website, weighing just 50 grams. Don't let the weight symbolise that they are weak, no they are in fact quite the opposite. They are strong and durable also, according to Google, whether that's true or not we will just have to wait and see.

Glass is available in a variety of colours including: Charcoal, Tangerine, Shale, Cotton and Sky (Blue). These colours are perfect because they will delight everyone, there is something for everyone when it comes to colour choice. It seems that these glasses will have a use for those that need prescription glasses as they have a modular design meaning that they can be attached to any prescription lenses. Sunglasses can also be attached to Glass making these very fashionable.

Tech Specs

Feature
 
 
 
Operating System
Android
 
 
Sound
Bone conduction transducer
 
 
Other features
Accelerometer
Compass
Gyrosocope
Usable Memory
12 GB
 
 
Weight
50 grams
 
 
Screen
640 x 360 pixels using a prism projector
 
 
Photo quality
5 MP
 
 

How It Feels Through Google Glass

Why would you like Google Glass?

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Applications and Software

The operating system that Glass uses is Android and Google are currently using free applications and software as part of the Google Glass experience. Third party developers are creating these apps and they have been given the API needed to create these apps so you can now create apps for Glass. These apps are increasing in number every week and here are a selection of some of the best on offer.

  • Cycling - With Strava you can get directions, data, time elapsed and distance you've travelled when cycling or racing your friends.
  • CNN - Get news updates in this real-time with CNN.
  • Elle - For all you fashionistas out there, you can now receive fashion updates through Google Glass.
  • Recipes: Hands covered in flour and can't reach the recipe book? You can now, literally see the instructions with this unique Allthecooks app. Have all the best and ultimate recipes 'in front of you' without you doing a thing, it's all hands free.
  • Translate Languages: Stuck in a country and don't know what anything means? Don't fear because with WorldLens it translates all the words for you, in real time. I think that is pretty impressive.
  • Golfing: With GolfSight you can get all the information you need about your score, pin distance and course data in the corner of your eye.

Translate your thoughts into any language possible!
Translate your thoughts into any language possible! | Source

How To Get Google Glass

After sitting here reading this hub, you probably want to get a Glass. Unfortunately as of November/December 2013 getting one won't be so easy. The price for a Glass currently is over $1500 but next year it should be less than $1000. Yes, it is a little pricey but you still cannot purchase it. You will need a direct invite code from Google to even allow you to pay/purchase a Glass. This invention is still in the beginning of its release to consumers worldwide but its getting there. If you want one now, you will have to live in the US, have $1500 ready if a spot opens up and be able to collect it from Google at New York, San Francisco or Los Angeles (you can get it delivered at extra cost).

This is known as the Explorer Program. To summarise, there are two ways in which you can get Glass.

  • Sign up here at Glass' website and wait if a spot opens up. If a spot does open up, you can purchase Glass for $1500 and collect it from Google's offices in New York, San Francisco or Los Angeles. It has a pretty hefty price tag but as it enters mainstream, the price should reduce. Android smartphones, another start-up moonshot that Google bought used to have a very expensive price tag but today, nine years later, over 1 billion devices are in use. They are a lot cheaper than what they were before when they first began. It is believed that this will happen to Glass.
  • Or, you don't have to wait for a spot to open up (think about it, there could be hundreds of thousands signed up for one). So instead you can purchase a direct invite code from eBay such as the ones on the right. Once you have this code, you can purchase and collect from Google.

Don't worry, Google will be making Glass more accessible for everyone in the future. Google are releasing it slowly to various groups in society such as developers and researches and it is still in beta. They are still experimenting with its features but one day, it should be accessible to all.

Update: On 16 April 2014, a 24 hour time frame was given to the public to purchase Glass if they wished. However, it is still only open to US residents and not to Europe or anywhere else in the world.

Do you think that Google Glass will become as popular as smartphones and tablets?

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Google Glass - In The Future?

So is Google Glass to future of technology? Yes, definitely I think so. When I think of how technology will evolve into the future, I can see Glass coming into the equation. It is a seamless, stylish and suave entrance into the technology world and makes technology look a lot more 'friendly' then it was before. When you think that you can get real-time information about virtually anything in the blink of an eye (literally!), that's something really unique. So well done to Google and keep up with the amazing inventions!

What do you think? Please leave your comments, thoughts and suggestions below where I will be delighted to answer you!

Comments

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    • susi10 profile image
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      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Alicia - Thank you so much for the wonderful comment, votes and share. I appreciate them very much.

      I agree, this is a very exciting time for technology! It is accelerating at a very quick speed, we are definitely entering the futuristic years with AR, all these gadgets and especially Glass. At the moment, it is still considered a gadget for geeks and many cannot see it taking off. But, just wait, in maybe ten to fifteen years if not less, I think it will be worn by the majority of the population.

      Wow, when you think that in the space of about 70 years, that so much technology has been created, it really is fascinating. From a computer the size of a room in 1944 to a tiny glass pane giving updates on news, notifications and more is phenomenal. We have come a long way, thanks to the likes of Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and the Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.

      In relation to your AR and newspapers hub, I think that Google Glass will be able to detect these AR codes in the newspaper and automatically show the video through the glass pane. Instead of scanning with a tablet/smartphone, Glass would detect it immediately. That would be an excellent development!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      This is a very interesting and useful hub! I've wanted to know more about Google Glass for some time, and your article answered my questions. I'm interested in seeing how the product develops over time as well as seeing when it becomes affordable and available. This is an exciting time for technology! I'll share this hub.

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hey Kalmiya!

      Thanks for dropping by, I agree. Google Glass is going to be incredible once it goes into the consumer msrket and drops in price. Technology has been changing rapidly over the last decade and the use of technology has grown exponentially. If you consider that just fifteen years ago, computers were the size of huge boxes that were so hard to use and set up, Google Glass looks like a gadget from a thousand years in the future.

      I think that Glass is the beginning for something spectacular, a technology that none of us can dream of, but its coming. I sure am looking forward to seeing it soon.

    • Kalmiya profile image

      Kalmiya 3 years ago from North America

      Google Glass is just incredible but I'm not sure what I think about the applications. It will certainly be fun in the beginning but after... ? It will be very interesting to see what becomes of it. Thanks for the very informative hub!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi glassapps,

      Great question! There are many apps you will be able to get with Google Glass. Google have recently allowed third-party developers to create apps so there will be many more heading into the market soon. Some good apps I have liked are: Word Lens - See words in a different languages.

      Strava - Great app which helps you when racing on your bike against friends. There are many more available.

      I hope that answers your question!

    • glassapps profile image

      glassapps 3 years ago

      Hi, can you also tell me about some good google glass apps?

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi JG11Bravo

      Sorry for not replying, I was meant to reply back but my internet was down so I completely forgot. I am really glad that you found this hub informative and you enjoyed it, I always appreciate comments from readers on what they think of my hubs. Hi five! I'm a tech geek too! Yes, I agree, it will be exciting to see what further apps will be produced down the line. I'll be updating this hub as new developments are released so stay tuned!

      Thanks again for everything, JGBravo!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi Mel! Thanks for commenting on this, yes I agree. I can see many people wearing Glass once other types become released and the prices come down.

    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 3 years ago from San Diego California

      I think we will all be wearing these contraptions in the next 10 to 15 years, after the patent expires and the market drives the price down. Great hub!

    • JG11Bravo profile image

      JG11Bravo 3 years ago

      I've been excited about Glass since they first made the announcement about it. Though admittedly it's just because I'm a mobility tech geek, the potential uses are astonishing. It feels like a streamlined, user-friendly version of the Land Warrior System.

      Anyway, back on point, I look forward to seeing more information and apps become available and integrated, bearing certain safety considerations in mind of course. This is an extremely informative hub, I enjoyed it quite a bit.

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi teaches12345,

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting on this hub, I really appreciate it. Yes, I would love to try a Glass too but they are a little pricey at the moment. Maybe when the price drops in 2014 I might get one. You are right, they would take a lot of getting used to at first, I've heard that the screen is both there and not there at the same time so you don't get distracted but it would take me a few weeks to get fully used to one. They are so futuristic, I don't think that we are quite used to them now.

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi FlourishAnyway!

      Thanks for commenting, yes I completely agree, Glass will be the future od distracted driving. In the UK, a woman was fined for wearing a Glass while driving, so there will be sanctions for wearing one whilst driving. Good point though.

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi rohanfelix!

      It's nice to see you, thanks for visiting and for sharing on Facebook, I really appreciate it!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      I have seen a few people wearing these devices. I would like to try it. My thoughts are that they would take some getting used to as a headpiece.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      This is wild, probably what they thought of talking on a phone in your car without a cord several decades ago! Talk about the future of distracted driving!

    • rohanfelix profile image

      Rohan Rinaldo Felix 3 years ago from Chennai, India

      Great hub! Voted interesting and shared on fb!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi Rebecca!

      Thanks so much for giving your thoughts on this and for sharing, I really want to thank you for your visit. Yes I wonder what they will think of next, the technology era is getting better and better faster than we can think of, this is the next step in technology most definitely.

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 3 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Wow. All I can think of is that old cliché, what'll they think of next? Thanks for sharing this. I will share this across the board.