The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Technology

September 2, 2013

Google Glass could be peek at tech future

(Continued)

Associated Press — Only eight applications from The New York Times, Facebook, Twitter, Path, Evernote, CNN, Tumblr and Elle magazine have been approved for use on the Explorer edition. Unfortunately, none of the Glass models we were allowed to sample were fully loaded with all the applications, or "Glassware," that have been designed for the device. It would have been nice to check them all out. Instead, CNN was the only app available for this test. I also couldn't log into my Gmail to see what that's like on Glass.

Other major limitations were time and physical constraints. I only got to spend about an hour wearing Glass and was confined to using it within Google's base camp and an adjoining patio overlooking the San Francisco Bay.

Glass has potential to be much more than a novelty, especially if Google lowers the price below $500 by the time the company begins selling the device to the general public next year. (The exact date has yet to be determined.)

I also quickly realized that a lot of people will be turned off by Glass, if for no other reason than how they make a person look. Google has strived to imbue Glass with a sense of style by decorating the titanium frames in five different colors: charcoal, tangerine, shale, cotton and sky blue. Glass also weighs about the same as a pair of regular sunglasses, a vast improvement over Google's early prototype of the device, which consisted of a phone attached to a scuba mask.

Glass doesn't actually have any spectacles in the frame, though Google eventually hopes to offer that option for those who wear prescription lenses.

Still, when you first put on Glass and look in the mirror, you probably aren't going to channel your inner Fernando Lamas (or Billy Crystal, for that matter) and say, "You look marvelous." I didn't walk around with Glass on the street, but from what I've heard from people in the Explorer program, they are often greeted with quizzical looks from bystanders who see the tiny display screen above the right eye and figure the device is an optical aid or part of a Cyborg costume. I thought Glass looked best with a sunglass clip-on designed for wearing the device outdoors.

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