Google Glass creator sees something smaller, faster and less awkward

Babak Parviz lays out Google's goals for an improved version of the device

Google Glass creator Babak Parviz, pictured July 8, 2014, discusses Google's goals for the technology.
Google Glass creator Babak Parviz, pictured July 8, 2014, discusses Google's goals for the technology.

Google has big hopes for its Glass head-mounted computer, chief among them a desire to make the unit smaller and more comfortable to wear.

Those were just a couple of the goals for a polished version of the device laid out Tuesday by Babak Parviz, the creator of Glass, who is also the director of Google's "X" special projects division.

"Essentially we'd like to make the technology disappear," he said during a conference on wearable technology in San Francisco.

"It should be non-intrusive" and as comfortable to wear as regular glasses or a wristwatch, he said.

Shrinking the unit would require advances in optics and photonics, he said. More computing power is also needed to make the device faster at answering people's questions on the fly, Parviz said.

Google is also looking at new ways to interact with the device, which currently can be done both through voice commands and by tapping the unit.

Glass is currently a beta product that Google calls the "Explorer" edition, though it can be purchased online for US$1,500. A polished version aimed at the broad consumer market could launch next year.

Google is positioning Glass as the next big thing beyond smartphones, partly by providing easier and faster access to information.

Since the unit's unveiling in 2012, it has attracted the attention of early adopters who see the promise in Google's pitch. But it has also prompted questions and some criticism, including privacy concerns related to its camera and doubts about how useful it actually is.

In San Francisco, some people have been attacked for wearing the device out in public.

Parviz did not directly address Glass' critics, but he did say that the version of Glass that exists now is "a nice, solid first step to where we want to go."

Moreover, the amount of information that Glass is capable of gathering about its wearers is a key advantage, Parviz said. Glass gathers information about its users based on how they use it, and by being paired with their smartphones. The unit also has components like an accelerometer and gyroscope inside.

A major goal, Parviz said, is to employ those various technologies to make information immediately accessible to the wearer.

"Glass is very aware of the user," he said. "There's consequences to that, and things to consider and be careful about. But there's also opportunity for a computer that's very close to the person."

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

To DMP or not to DMP?

There are plenty of brands that can benefit from plugging into a data management platform. But should you engage an agency to run one or bring it in-house?

Ben Willee and Richard Taylor

Spinach Advertising

Innovations in retail will bring creative and technology closer than ever

While approaching a customer in a shop and asking what you can help them with is Retail 101, how many of us actually enjoy being approached? Generally, you have to give the forced, fake smile and say, “Just browsing, thanks,” while screaming on the inside, “just leave me alone!” Maybe it’s just me?

Jason Dooris

CEO and founder, Atomic 212

There’s a brand in my digital soup

Not a day passes by in the life of business executives where digital innovation or the prospect of disruption is not front of mind. This in turn, drives an unrelenting flow of questioning, discussion and strategy papers.

Jean-Luc Ambrosi

Author, marketer

I need to be reborn before i can grow up & become a contestent.

Kaye Peterkin

Channel Nine's content now streamed digitally on 9Now

Read more

I hope The Block, will continue for many many more seasons.When i die, & grow up, I want yo come back as a contestent.

Kaye Peterkin

Channel Nine's content now streamed digitally on 9Now

Read more

Sounds a bit confusing, but also like there're quite a few benefits. So, it's a good idea to link it with crm and marketing automation? D...

Kirsten

To DMP or not to DMP? - Marketing automation - CMO Australia

Read more

cc

Marjorie Campbell

Talk to me, Facebook! Social net buys speech recognition company

Read more

This would have the be the worst company to ever use. They never get back to you, they over promise and under deliver and when you questi...

Samantha Colbert

Aussie entrepreneur Nick Bell sells WME Group to Melbourne IT

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in