Google returns to project with smart glasses
Among the many new products that Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, introduced to the public this week, the most fun is a pair of glasses. Anyone who remembers the Google Glasses fiasco ten years ago would be excused for paying little attention. These new glasses, however, look so peaceful that no one would notice them on the street. And yet, they carry enough artificial intelligence to project information through the lens of the wearer.
In the demo video, Pichai showed a gentleman who speaks Spanish but not English reading produced subtitles in real time. Traveling the world will never be the same again. But there is no date for these augmented reality glasses to hit stores. It’s a product in development and a showcase of what Google has been calling “environmental technology.” In a way, Google tries to be Apple.
Ambient technology is mostly subtle. One of Google’s difficulties is that, well, its business logic is not the same as Apple’s. Apple sells machines. Google sells advertising.
As Apple sells machines, its focus is on making them very unique, very easy to use, loaded with services that encourage the user to continue using the brand. Integration is necessary so that anyone who buys an iPhone thinks it’s worth getting an iPad, maybe a MacBook.
Since Google sells advertising, it needs to play in the big numbers field. The more people who use Google products for more hours of the day, the more behavioral data the company will have to accurately target advertising. So Google doesn’t want exclusivity. Your Android system is not made for a few. It’s supposed to be on as many smartphones as you can. Each one will be an information-producing machine to sell advertisements.
The consequence of almost every cell phone being Android is that Google has no control over how the machines work. But during the Google I/O conference this week, the company launched a new generation of its own smartphone, the pixel 7. This year, he will also launch a new tablet, the Pixel Buds for the ears and a Pixel Watch. An entire line of high-end products, capable of competing with Apple or Samsung. The company allowed the Android system and equipment teams to operate together.
This integrated future starts with the machines we already have working as if they were all a single computer. Then come those glasses, the smart clothes. And whatever else it is.