IT WAS meant to be such a triumph. Google’s forthcoming wonder product, Glass, the special specs that allow users to surf the net, record video, make phone calls and more, was unleashed at their annual developer conference last week. Everyone was trying them. However, it raised more concerns than plaudits.
It works a treat, according to reports. A quick tap on a button, the screen bursts into life and a swipe on the arm of the glasses is like moving a computer mouse and voice commands will select functions and initiate searches. The battery lasts all day. Wink and that tells the camera to take a picture.
As long as you don’t wear prescription specs, it has the potential to be a great accessory, which might even be available for Christmas. (If you do have lenses bridging your nose already, you might have to switch to contacts, if you want Glass.)
The airwaves should have been buzzing with positives. Instead, there were questions. First up was safety. As your eyes need to adopt a near focus to use it and it is clearly as distracting as looking at a mobile phone, what happens if someone uses Glass whilst driving or using complex machinery?
Next came privacy issues. You can tell if someone is pointing a video or mobile phone camera in your direction, but if someone walks towards you wearing Google Glass, there is no telling what they are doing.
There was one developer who told how he strolled into the conference mens’ room. That everyone else in there was wearing Glass was disconcerting. The guy next to him blinked, or did he wink?