Google Glass became a reality

Sergei Terekhov

Written by Sergei Terekhov | Thursday, 13 March 2014

My dear readers, this article is devoted to one of the most promising novelties of the technologies market – Google Glass. It has finally been released; and now we have the chance to see how all the fantastic features shown in advertising are implemented in the real life. Let’s start with the technical specifications of the device published by Google.

Adjustable nosepads and durable frame fits any face.
Extra nosepads in two sizes.
High resolution display is the equivalent of a 25 inch high definition screen from eight feet away.
Photos - 5 MP
Videos - 720p
Bone Conduction Transducer
Wifi - 802.11b/g
12 GB of usable memory, synced with Google cloud storage. 16 GB Flash total.
One full day of typical use. Some features, like Hangouts and video recording, are more battery intensive.
Included Micro USB cable and charger.
Any Bluetooth-capable phone.
The MyGlass companion app requires Android 4.0.3 (Ice Cream Sandwich) or higher. MyGlass enables GPS and SMS messaging.

As I wear normal glasses, I was wondering how Google would solve the problem with users like me. Should we be wearing two pairs of glasses like in 3D cinema? Fortunately, Google Glass has a modular design and can look like just a thin rim one can wear over his usual glasses. Further, different rims and lenses can be added to the system.

Google has not only announced the immediate availability of the first Google Glass, but also published a considerable part of documentation for application development.

Firstly, there is a developer's guide for Glass Mirror API. Access to the API itself is still limited and open only to developers who have the device. This first version of the API allowing developers to create applications (Google actually calls them Glassware) has a relatively poor functionality. Its best feature is probably the possibility of defining the owner’s location. Google also offers projects for Java and Python developers, as well as client libraries Go, PHP, .NET, Ruby and Dart. As Glass is a new concept, Google has also published some best practices and general guidelines on how applications should interact with the glasses.

According to Google, developers should remember that applications are created for glasses and always test their applications on the device before publishing them. Applications should not shield the user’s view or annoy him with frequent and loud notifications. Applications should also be focused on real time work and respond to the user’s activities as quickly as possible.

In general, the first release offers very limited opportunities for developers. But it is actually the very first release; and it is likely that the development interfaces functional might soon be expanded.
Another interesting piece of news is that Google forbids device owners to sell or lend their Glasses (Glass Explorer Edition) to anyone. Otherwise, the Google Glass will be deactivated.
What they say:
"you may not resell, loan, transfer, or give your device to any other person. If you resell, loan, transfer, or give your device to any other person without Google's authorization, Google reserves the right to deactivate the device, and neither you nor the unauthorized person using the device will be entitled to any refund, product support, or product warranty."

Of course, it can be a temporary measure until Google Glass will become a truly mass device like a smartphone. But so far, if you buy the device or receive it as a gift from the company, you may smash them, or take them apart, but you are not allowed to give or to sell it to another person.

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