Google halts sales, but Glass isn’t dead

Google has appeared to admit that it hasn’t quite cracked Glass, as the tech giant announced that it would halt sales of its high-tech specs. The company said it remained committed to launching a consumer version of its smart eyewear, Google Glass, but would stop making the headset in its current form.

The Glass Explorer programme was launched in the US in 2013 and the UK last year, and was expected to be followed by a mass market rollout. Now, Google will stop taking orders for headsets from January 19.

Originally touted as the first major wearable tech item, Glass was reportedly the brainchild of Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The device promised to deliver multiple, revolutionary hands-free applications. Yet modest sales were compounded by concerns over privacy. Google said it would still offer support to companies that already use Glass.

The announcement comes days after Tesco became the first major UK retailer to launch a Glass app, Tesco Grocery, which lets shoppers browse supermarket shelves and make purchases hands-free. Last year, Reuters surveyed 16 Glass app developers, nine of whom admitted they had stopped work on their apps, due to the device’s technical limitations or lack of popularity.

Speaking to an audience in Bogota, Colombia this week, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg appeared to suggest another reason for Glass’s failure to take hold in the public imagination: the device just looks “weird.”

Source : Google halts sales, but Glass isn’t dead, Tim Walker ( )


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