Google's newest invention, Google Glasses, has caused quite a stir in the world of technology and has caused many gadget lovers to wait with bated breath for the chance to buy them. Unfortunately, the high-tech, internet-connected glasses have only been available to select software developers who signed up to the test the glasses a year ago. Until now. Google has recently announced that they have a limited number of these glasses for sale and will be accepting applications from deserving people who want to buy them. In order to be selected, potential Google Glasses owners will need to post a message on Google+ or on Twitter using the hashtag #ifihadglass describing what they would do if they had the glasses. The cut-off date for entry is February 27th, so if you want to throw your hat in the ring, you'll have to do it quick.
For those who aren't familiar with these innovative, ultra-connected eye ware, you can watch Google's promotional video How it Feels Through Glass on YouTube. The glasses feature flexible and durable wire frames, with or without actual lenses. The big difference between these glasses and traditional eye ware is the small computer above the right eye. The tiny computer and miniature glass screen allows the wearer to always be connected to the Google services they love. Wearing them allows people to record real time videos of what they are seeing, send text messages, video chat using Google + hangouts, get accurate walking directions and more. Just watching the video made me think of a million different ways that I would use them.
According to a review by Forbes, the glasses access the Internet through Wi-Fi or through a bluetooth connection to a smartphone. They respond to voice commands, and wearers can activate and use the glasses through a series of key phrases, by moving their heads or touching the frames.
It's interesting to think that these glasses might be a peek into the ultra-connected world of the future. Now that so many people have become dependent on their smartphones, Google has found a way to stop them from constantly having to check their phones. With the glasses, the Internet is always in sight – always ready to instantly share the important (and not so important) moment of their lives.
One of the biggest challenges Google has faced with the glasses, aside from technological ones, was making them look fashionable. Knowing that people won't want to wear the glasses everyday if they make them look stupid, Google has teamed up with Warby Parker, an online start-up that sells trendy glasses to help make the Google Glass look appealing. The company has already made waves by taking cues from the best online retailers like Zappos and providing an excellent selection of frames combined with outstanding customer service. In it's first year of business, Warby Parker sold an estimated 20,000 pairs of frames, which is a lot in such a highly competitive industry.
Style, or lack thereof, hasn't prevented Google's CEO, Sergey Brin from wearing them every time he is seen in public. In fact, there have already been photos of him wearing the glasses while riding a NYC subway, and he has even shared them with Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, but only for a moment.
If you want to get your hands on these glasses, all you have to do is send a great tweet – but be prepared to shell out some cash. The people who win a chance to buy one of these prototypes will have to pay a staggering $1,500 for them. It's a lot to spend on a pair of glasses, even if they are amazing, which is another problem that Google is facing. While customers might not mind shelling out a few hundred dollars for a tablet or a smart phone, many of them would be less than excited about spending over a grand on glasses. However, Google says that when the glasses actually hit the market in about a year, the price will be much lower. Since these are prototypes, they cost more because the company hasn't been able to analyze and find ways to cut production costs.
Still, they are an amazing piece of technology and show off everything that is great about innovation. I'm very excited about the promise they show, but I can wait a year and hope that the price goes down. Until then, I'll look forward to seeing how they change the world around them.
What do you think about Google's glasses? Would you pay $1,500 for them? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Image Source: Google