Shattered Glass

Trigger Warnings – None

So what’s in the news of late that’s safe to talk about without inciting the rage of dozens who take a strong stance one way or the other? Not that I’m scared, I’m just tired after a long day, I’ll save defending my point of view for another evening. Well, I figured I’d discuss Google Glass, no doubt most of you are aware it has devalued like a rock lately with it now ending up on eBay at half the RRP from people who have gotten bored of the funky specs. Why? I’m glad you asked, allow me to take some educated guesses as to the reasons the product is failing, using the trends in product reviews

1. The heinous price tag

The latest gadgets almost never come cheap, any idiot can tell you that but Google Glass is pushing it with the initial model coming out at roughly £1000/$1500 a pop, which is a lot to pay for something you can’t be certain will catch on. A lot of gadgets have high price tags on of course but we could easily see their usefulness or appeal and generally these gadgets didn’t cost half as much as Glass. Tablets, smartphones, laptops, consoles – all pricey yes, but you wouldn’t have to spend £1000 to get a decent one and if you did, it was because you knew exactly what you were getting, Glass, not so much. At that price, it needs to be guaranteed as the next step in user-friendly tech but most people I encountered saw it as a needlessly pricey accessory for geeks

2. The lastability

Google Glass is said to have a very short battery life for a gadget, five hours, which might not seem all that short but when it’s selling points are internet browsing and photo taking, you might as well stick with the phone. The warranty covers accidental damages and thefts but the product is apparently prone to some issues such as warping out of shape in the heat, the computer unit is easily damaged, software patches can render the device useless or laggy – whilst these issues are being fixed as I write this and won’t be too prevalent in the consumer-class versions, they’re off putting for beta testers

3. The limited applications

Ok, we all have to admit that it has it perks as a product – hands-free is a great step forward, no more awkward camera holding, no keyboards, no touch pads, just a carefully pronounced vocal command and voila. However, outside of train schedules, instant photos and never needing a watch ever again, Google Glass is suffering from a lack of variety. App developers for the product have ditched their efforts already, some of them not interested in ever resuming that work ever again because they think it a waste of resources to make apps for a novelty product

4. It’s gonna get cheaper

This might knock down on the price problem for earlier but there is supposed to be a new model coming soon, made for the average blue-collar guy or girl or any other gender identity with a bit of disposable income. With that in mind, some of the product testers are being told they can keep theirs for free but this means that people aren’t going to be interested in the full £1000 package and might settle for the £200-£500 bargain deal. However, the fact the cheaper version is coming out is a kick in the teeth to those who spent £1000 on their versions laden with technical glitches and design flaws so a few of the pricey versions have found themselves on the internet from owners trying to recuperate their losses

Perhaps Google Glass will catch on in the years ahead and this article will be something to laugh about whilst we effortlessly stream Netflix to our faces and A+ for effort goes to Google for trying to pioneer new forms of technology rather than another rounded off rectangle with bells and whistles on it. The product reviews have been generally positive, usually around 3 out of 5 stars and they say it is a fun bit of kit to own, it starts conversations, it wows the kids, it has its “You couldn’t do this with a phone could you?” moments but it still has a few kinks to iron out – a short battery life, a flimsy design, a dwindling interest from software developers – but with the more affordable versions coming out and Google discussing their options for the future with some third-party companies, we could well see this becoming something of a craze in the next five years

Personally, I’m yet to be impressed but I’ve yet to try the gadget so my opinion doesn’t mean much, I’m yet to be impressed by Taylor Swift’s culinary skills as well but she’s never invited me round for dinner so there we go… although given her recent use of a knife, perhaps I’ll give it a miss if she ever did… for what reason she would is beyond my imagination though. Erhem, back on track, I guess all we can do is wait for it to hit the mainstream in adverts and on shelves in tech stores and then see if it catches on from there


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