ORLANDO, FLORIDA-It seems that Google sees hands-free as the new frontier-first the debut of their self-driving car and now Project Glass, a prototype of augmented reality glasses that replace the need for a smartphone, camera or GPS.
Danny Sullivan, the editor-in-chief at Search Engine Land, calls them “Google’s Siri for your eyes” and an article on www.forbes.com went so far as to say that iPhone maker’s days are numbered.
“We believe technology should work for you-to be there when you need it and get out of your way when you don’t,” Google wrote in a post on April 4, shortly after they announced the project. “One that helps you explore and share your world, putting you back in the moment.”
One of the people heading up the project, Google Fellow Sebastian Thrun, has taken a prototype out for some real-life research. In a Google+ update on May 8, he posted an image and video he took during his test.
Google is using the Project Glass page on Google+ to start a conversation about the product, asking for feedback and questions people have about the design photos and video they released demonstrating the concept. There were more than 500 comments, including questions about integration with prescription glasses and how they plan to handle battery life obstacles.
Not only does the video attempt to show how a steady stream of information about weather, mass transit schedules and turn-by-turn directions enhance the quality of the wearer’s life, it demonstrates potential ways that the glasses help him connect socially. Using only voice commands, he takes a picture that posts directly to his Google+ page, sets up a meeting with a friend, checks in at the coffee truck outside the bookstore, accesses and responds to text messages, and shares his view from a rooftop during a video conversation.
While Google has working prototypes and lofty goals for the concept, the technology may or may not be able to deliver. The International Business Times pointed out five obstacles that Project Glass would have to overcome, including a way to filter messages, allow for multi-tasking, and get away from Internet reliance.
The release date isn’t set, but like Steven Levy at Wired.com says, “The video has more than enough information to open up a conversation about the potential effects of having the digital world unbound from the confines of a hand-held gadget and more or less integrated into everyday reality.”
It also raises other questions about how it would impact search engine optimization marketing. As technology becomes more advanced, SEO has to advance with it, but our CEO Ali Husayni says it is too soon to tell what changes it might bring.
“The potential for this product is exciting, but right now concrete details are sparse and no release date has been set,” he says. “What this does emphasize is that Google+ is only going to become more and more important.”
Google+ is already a factor used in the search algorithm to determine the popularity and relevance of a website. The push to make it the go-to source for Google’s news and announcements about new technology seems to be Google’s way of telling companies that to organically improve rankings, they will have to get on board.
Do you think this technology will become a reality? And, if so, how do you foresee this impacting search?