Google Glass: Changing How We See the World
:: By Anna Gale, Fueled ::
Today’s smartphones have thousands of available applications that have disrupted once-thriving technologies such as PDAs, GPS, cameras and even PCs. This is the concept behind disruptive innovation, where a new product or service is created in a new market and is improved upon until it eventually costs less and displaces established competitors. Google Glass is a type of disruptive innovation with the potential to disrupt the smartphone market and change the way we see the world.
What is Google Glass?
Google Glass is Google’s first effort to enter the wearable technology market. It takes a step beyond the flashy high-tech specs of smartphones such as high-pixel cameras by also providing lifestyle applications of pervasive computing. Pervasive computing is the concept that computing is made to be everywhere and anywhere (e.g. being able to turn off the air conditioner while in your car via a mobile device).
Google Glass is essentially a mini computer with all its functionalities built into a headset that has a tiny screen on the upper corner. The display and voice activation has the potential to change the way we think about sight and visual interaction.
Functions of Google Glass
Although new applications and functions will continue to be developed for Google Glass for the foreseeable future, the voice activation feature seems to be one of the most interesting innovations. Google Glass can be prompted to record videos and take pictures, which can be shared on any social network.
In addition, there is also a feature that enables live video sharing. Messages you receive via email or text can be seen on screen and responded to with voice control. You can also look up, or rather “Google” any kind of information, just by asking a question. Google maps, one of Google’s most popular apps, is also available along with driving instructions.
Google Glass vs. Smartphones
Up to this point, Google Glass seems like a device that manages to take the power of your smartphone out of your pocket and into your field of vision, right? That is a correct assumption, but Google Glass has the potential to go much deeper and amplify those functions in so many other ways.
For example, while listening to music you can instantly look up facts about artists. Imagine playing a game in the real world for which you are required to go to some specific physical location and complete certain tasks and then checking in on Foursquare before moving on. Athletes such as swimmers can use Google Glass to pull up real time data while they swim to determine how fast they need to swim to beat their previous lap. After all, in this scenario, data is useless unless you are able to pull it up in real-time.
Google Glass is not without its controversies, however. People have been voicing their concern about the possibility of being filmed without their permission. While those concerns have merit, the fact is, people can already film you with smartphones, yet they don’t make it a habit to “document” their lives. In numerous ways, it is the possibilities that Google Glass presents that trump the privacy issues, and they will certainly open up our eyes.
Anna Gale is a marketer at Fueled, the leading iPhone app builder in New York City, renowned for its award winning mobile design and strategy.