TriCom Technical Services

Google’s Goggles

In advertising, Back to the Future, data analytics, glasses, goggles, Google, head tilt, Men in Black, Oakley, pregnancy, pregnant, Target, Terminator on February 23, 2012 at 10:34 am

The futuristic scenes of Men in Black and Back to the Future are certainly coming upon us.

Rumors have been circulating about Google Glasses, which are designed to take virtual information and overlay it onto real-world images in real-time through a small screen worn inches from the wearer’s eyes.

These glasses are said to resemble “Oakley Thumps” rather than the otherworldly glasses of Terminator, although, I can’t imagine many fashion-conscious women donning these shades.

These sci-fi glasses, while not the first of their kind, are certainly the first product to be designed for mass consumption. They have been circulating for at least 10 years now through companies such as Sony and Vuzik, with prices range from $5k-$25k (out of the question for most of us).  Google’s goggles are rumored to be sold at near the average price of the existing Smartphone, anywhere from $250-$600 dollar a pair.

While not perhaps the most fashion forward, these glasses do have some impressive features. These shades will be equipped with 3G-4G connection, motion sensors, GPS, a low-resolution built in camera and Google software. Navigating the world of augmented reality will be done by the user simply tilting his head to scroll and click.  I can’t wait to see this in action! I imagine it will look something like this…

But what about people who wear glasses to improve their sight? So far, there has been no word on the level of compatibility these glasses will have with prescription glasses.

Some people are worried about the possibility of being under constant surveillance, given that people can record without being conspicuous. The team at Google has been internally discussing ways in which they can make it obvious to others when the glasses are recording.

Of course, Big Brother watches in more ways than just through a camera lens. It is certainly a possibility that Google will have the ability to access everything that the user views through the glasses in order to gather data related to the consumer’s lifestyle. This data could be used directly by Google to create advertisements geared toward the wearer’s location, activities, and possibly even physical movements themselves.

While many, if not most companies, have methods of collecting data on individuals in order to market products more effectively, consider the recent case with Target. Through data analytics and tracking purchases, the company was able to infer that a high-school girl was pregnant before her father even knew. The company used this information to send the girl coupons relating to maternity and baby care needs (much to the initial anger of her father). Target was able to do all of this simply through tracking her purchases.

Imagine the power over advertising Google could have if they are able to obtain information on EVERYTHING you do or are exposed to while wearing these glasses!

Not everyone seems horribly creeped out by this possibility, however. According to an online poll at androidandme.com, only 62% said that they would wear these goggles, 8% considers the idea stupid, and the other 30% remains uncertain on their feelings toward the glasses.

Sources say that Google is already working on new projects in regards to wearable computers, such as wrist straps. I wonder how long before Apple joins in the race of computerized accessories.

Google Glasses Coming to an Eyewear Stand Near You?

Google to Sell Heads-Up Display Glasses by Year’s End

Would you buy Google’s glasses?

How Target Figured Out A Teen Girl Was Pregnant Before Her Father Did

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  1. Update: Google released images of the wrap-style web-based glasses. http://ht.ly/a68wx

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