Google Glass hits the mainstream

By on March 26, 2014
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Google has signed a deal with the parent company of Ray Ban and Oakley, the Luxottica Group, to make what it is calling “innovative iconic wearable devices”. Whether people will actually want to wear them is another story.

Since the first prototypes were seen around San Francisco, there has been a buzz around the internet about Google Glass. Unfortunately for the internet giant talk has been less about the actual technology and more about whether or not people would risk being seen wearing them in public.

The deal between the two companies will, “establish a team of experts devoted to working on the design, development, tooling, and engineering of Glass products that straddle the line between high-fashion, lifestyle, and innovative technology”, reads Luxottica’s buzzword-filled statement.

This isn’t the first time the company has had a go at integrating technology into its glasses: in 2004, it released the calamitously ugly Oakley Thump, and then in 2005, launched the now-almost-entirely-forgotten-about ‘Razrwire’ Bluetooth glasses.

Google reckons Luxottica’s retail channels (which include Sunglass Hut) make it a useful partner. “They will serve us well when we make Glass available to more people down the road”, its statement read, rather hopefully.

So from here on in, it won’t just be Glassholes (the endearing nickname chosen for Google Glass sporting individuals) wearing titanium monobrows who are verbally abused in bars – anyone wearing a pair of sunglasses could soon be a potential target.

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