Will Ray-Ban Frames Be Enough to Make Google Glass Cool?
Out in San Francisco they've already popularized the term "glassholes," writes the satirist Gary Shtyengart — one of the first East Coasters invited to try the device for a review in The New Yorker.
Shtyengart isn't the only one to approach Google Glass with a mixture of awe and skepticism. On one hand there are jokes about the device's voice recognition and a wariness about being "plugged in" to news feeds for every waking hour. And on the other is an unmistakable enthusiasm for the idea of wearable technology. While it's still hard to see why the typical consumer might shell out $1,500 for an item that can't really do much more than a smartphone, the personalized applications for Glass are pretty nifty, from chefs making instructional videos to bikers mapping their routes.
In a sign that Glass is getting closer to market, Google recently announced that it partnered with the eye-glasses giant Luxottica to develop designer frames. Would trendy brands be enough to shake the niche reputation of Glass’ users?
The partnership with Luxottica also reveals Google's desire to make more marketable hardware, and the need to mimic Apple's ability to make products that are both helpful and cool. That has to be disconcerting for the iPhone pioneer, whose ambitions to move into TV streaming alongside Comcast seem close to falling through.
Will Google Glass’ long-awaited rollout be a hit or flop? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
James Dennin is the content strategist at Kapitall, an online investing platform.