Eric Schmidt: Google Glass can be ‘inappropriate,’ talking to it ‘the weirdest thing’

April 26, 2013
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    Google’s Chairman Eric Schmidt described his personal experience with Google Glass in a talk at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

    The former CEO had some interesting things to say about the product – the sort of things you wouldn’t necessarily expect to hear from a high-ranking company official.

    Talking about the voice recognition capabilities of Google Glass, Schmidt described the experience of talking out loud to control the gadget as “the weirdest thing.” He further deemed Google Glass as “inappropriate” for certain places.

    He referred to Google Glass-related privacy concerns, saying that people will have to adopt “new etiquette” for such products that “can record video surreptitiously and bring up information that only the wearer can see.”

    In fact, it looks like Google won’t be as open with Glass apps as it is with Android apps, as the company will want to better control the app approval process for the new product. Schmidt commented on the matter:

    It’s so new, we decided to be more cautious. It’s always easier to open it up more in the future.

    This is the second time in a matter of days that Google’s Chairman talked about this particular product. In an interview with the BBC, he revealed that Google Glass will hit stores in about a year, but that’s also where he mentioned for the first time that Google Glass will require a new “social etiquette” and that wearing the glasses is “not appropriate […] in situations where recording is not correct.”

    A few months ago, a bar decided to ban the use of Google Glass well ahead of its launch over privacy concerns, and while that announcement was made half-jokingly in a self-promoting kind of way via Facebook, it looks like Schmidt is also somewhat concerned about the privacy implications of Google Glass use.

    That said, we’ll remind you that for now only Explorers have access to the product, with a commercial launch set in the not-so-close future. While you wait for the product to hit stores, you can check out our “How it Works: Google Glass” feature to learn more details about the product.

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