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Google's glasses look incredible and already face intense competition - analyst

Is this the next big thing?
April 8, 2012

From a skunkworks project developed in the secretive Google X labs, the rumored “Google Glasses” have stepped out of the shadows and  right into the limelight. Dubbed Project Glass, Google is developing eyewear with HUD (Heads up display) display technology in an attempt to deliver real-time information right in the user’s field of vision. If this device functions as promised in the project’s unveiling video, it is likely to radically revolutionize mobile communication as we know it.

Some of the expected features of the device are:

  • It uses a small see-through display placed above the wearer’s eye that will show data, including maps and incoming calls and messages.
  • Built-in microphones allows control through voice commands
  • A tiny camera that enables you to take pictures
  • A (likely) bluetooth device allowing the user to listen to music on the move
  • A variety of sensors to assist in the devices functioning

It remains to be seenwhether the device will work as an add-on accessory to your smartphone or as a stand-alone device. The prototype images that we’ve seen so far certainly don’t seem like it has the working area to house even a microSIM card(this might also be an indication of the first application of the nano-SIM), and there doesn’t seem to be a bluetooth headset attached for voice calls or music. Of course, it is still very early in its development phase, and more information will become available the further we move along. But, it has certainly caught everyone’s attention.

And, of course, this brings us to Google’s competition. Even though “Project Glass” was unveiled just last week, it seems that competition has already reared its head, according to Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White. White is currently in meetings with supply chain companies in China and Taiwan and has provided very useful insights on the current and future state of the market, in a letter to investors. In one, he mentions that “Project Glass” already has “competitors working on similar initiatives to improve consumer’s mobility around Internet access.” He did not provide any information on who the potential competitors are or what the features of these rival products might be.

This news is, of course, expected. These devices are still in their conceptual stage and it will most certainly be fun to see how this alln plays out. All we know at this point is that the next step in innovative mobile technology is closer to being a reality than everyone previously thought.

If you’ve missed the introductory video of “Project Glass,” or just want to watch it again, you can view it here

What are your thoughts? Is Google Glasses(or similar tech) the next big thing? Anyone want to take a guess on who the competition is? If this product was on the market right now – and performed as per the video above – would you buy it?