The day Glass Explorers have been anxiously awaiting is finally here, and just in time for the open registration event! After a lengthy 4-month wait, XE16 has emerged and transcended its potential vaporware moniker to became a reality. As we've already learned, this latest installment includes a massive version bump to KitKat, photo bundles, photos in Hangouts, sorted voice commands, and much more.
Warning, it looks like everything on Glass will be deleted during the update to XE16.
There are nothing short of three-quarter bajillion things that need to be remembered over the course of a day, and we as a species have steadily worked to provide a solution that compensates for our forgetfulness. Notepads work, but they take up space. Post-it notes aren't all that elegant or portable of a solution. Smartphones, when combined with the right app, are pretty close to nailing it. But can Google Glass do it better?
If you've been anxiously awaiting your opportunity to get your very own Google Glass, and somehow you've missed every other invite or code giveaway, your time is coming up in just a few days. The Glass team has confirmed documents leaked to The Verge that indicate Google will be giving a one-day pass to all residents of the United States to join the Explorer Program and purchase their very own head-mounted unit.
Throughout Glass' gradual expansion to more and more Explorers, there's been a lot of talk about using the device professionally in demanding environments, particularly healthcare (and firefighting). Wearable Intelligence is a company looking to tackle the former, along with energy industries, by building firmware for Glass that replaces its usual Android installation with one customized to fit the needs of those industries.
Wearable Intelligence says its healthcare solution is HIPAA compliant, and from their promotional video, it looks undoubtedly impressive.
The Google Glass team knows that if you're thinking about mounting a computer on your face, you should do it with some style. Today, Google and the Luxottica Group announced a partnership that will see the two companies working together to design stylish and comfortable frames to pair with Google Glass. This follows the the Glass team's own Titanium line of frames launched back in January.
The Luxottica Group owns, manufactures, and distributes famous brands such as Oakley, Ray-Ban, and Persol.
Droiders is an app-developing startup, and today it's launching MedicAR, a piece of Glassware that uses augmented reality to assist students studying to become surgeons. It guides them through certain procedures, showing them where to cut, what tools to use, what to do next, and how to close things back up afterwards. The video below shows it in action, and don't worry, it's not graphic.
After the rollout of XE12 in mid-December and the announcement that January would not bring an update, Glass Explorers have been anxiously awaiting the release of XE14, originally due in February. As it turns out, they were to be disappointed. In a posting to the private Glass Community forum late yesterday, Teresa Z explained that XE14 had missed its February deadline. The reason: it simply wasn't ready to be released. Unfortunately, no details were given with regard to the timeline for the next update.
Sony is showing off its own take on Google Glass at Mobile World Congress, and while the current name, the SmartEyeglass concept, doesn't flow as well as Google's, it already looks less weird. The company has managed to cram an accelerometer, compass, brightness sensor, embedded camera, microphone, and other bits of hardware inside a bulkier but otherwise normal-looking frame.
The company first unveiled the product at CES, and details remain scarce.
As Google Glass continues toward an inevitable public release, users (and developers) are still trying to puzzle out exactly what the device is best suited for. There are games, cooking apps, news alert apps, and of course a tidy bundle of Google services in the slowly expanding list of official Glassware. Of course, there's more to Glass than official Glassware. Developers are making some fairly compelling tools for Google's eyeball computer, and Brivo Labs, in an effort to "explore the future of wearable technology," recently published a demonstration of one such tool.
Questions about Google Glass and conventional prescription glasses have been flying since the project was announced, but Google finally seem ready to initiate a program to make the two come into conjunction. The Glass team announced frames for prescription lenses and sunglasses for Glass on Google+, along with a glitzy video. The titanium glasses frames will be put up for order exclusively to Glass Explorers later today.
Unfortunately, the solution that Google has presented isn't one size fits all - you'll have to choose from a selection of four standard frames (Split, Thin, Bold, Curve) and order lenses to fit.