Google "gives" glass to the public's eyes / by Isabelle Ringnes

Google is expanding their initial glass explorer program to include anyone who wants to test the company’s wearable computing glasses, which are famously still in the beta development stage.

The giant tech company initially launched the (in)famous innovation last year to a small pool of lucky “glass explorers”. Curios techies were encouraged to creatively express what they would do #ifIhadglass on Twitter. The most creative tweets won the opportunity to pay the company $1500 (excluding tax) for a chance to see the world from behind Google Glass. But the majority of these “Glassholes”, a popular term in which these explorers have famously claimed, are not defending their pricey investments.

According to many of the beta-testers, the battery life is poor and their use limited, crediting it to essentially be a wearable camera with worse image resolution than your phone.

Google released the product targeting engineers and developers hoping that they would help improve the product before it reached the public eye. The device has received a significant amount of media attention, primarily for the flux of raised privacy and safety concerns. In addition to lobbying for it’s legal commercial usage in Washington, Google’s engineers are working hard to further improve the product, which currently offers video recording, email access, turn-by-turn driving directions and Internet search by voice and touch commands. However, the command phrase “OK glass” combined with the unusual design has yet to become socially acceptable. But despite the glasses exclusivity stamp, they are likely to be considered too expensive for the general public whom have shown little interest in acquiring a pair. Industry experts estimate the actual manufacturing price to be below $200 and express Google’s need to lower the price significantly before the average consumer will consider taking on more cyborgian appearance.

It may be smart to stay on the sideline for now, as both the product and price are expected to improve in the near future.