Rumors that Google may be working on a wearable HUD-based mobile device have been circulating for a few months now, and today the project has been revealed to the public for the first time. Project Glass is its name, and currently it's being developed at Google's secretive X Lab, or Google[x], to give it its full name.

The concept designs and demo video on Project Glass's Google+ page show sleek, stylish glasses that look like something right out of the Deus Ex universe. There's a metal frame for support, with a chunkier, plastic area and HUD (likely where the actual electronics are stored) near the right eye.

In an introductory post, the the Project Glass team says it's aiming to create technology which can be "there when you need it, and get out of your way when you don't." A demo video shows off possible uses for the tech, including messaging, navigation, video chat, social networking and photography. At this stage the team says it's looking for feedback and input from the public, and there's no information on any actual products which may spring from this project.

When they do arrive, though, it's only natural that they'd run Android in some form or other. We'll be watching Project Glass with interest as Google IO approaches, we're it's possible we'll learn more about this exciting new tech.

It's official folks -- we are living in the future. We've got the first video of Project Glass after the break, along with more photos of people with crazy futuristic eyewear.

Source: Project Glass


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Reader comments

Google's Project Glass shows vision of wearable mobile tech


If these look like they do in the video then I want a pair. They would be great when riding a motorcycle.

This might be reason enough for laser surgery or contacts for me. I've had issues with 3D glasses for ages but never cared enough to be bothered. Looks like we have to get used to it for now

Or can we have prescription Google Glasses?

If we could have that, and maybe powered tinting (transitions don't do crap in a car) to make them sunglasses I would pay top dollar.

yup...as someone who's worn glasses since I was 6, this was exactly the first thought that popped in my head, as well. Make these suckers in prescription lenses and have them look like ordinary glasses (or at least not big & bulky) and I'll be one of the first to buy them!!! These things are freaking awesome!!! It would make you feel like terminator wearing them lol

Exactly my first thought.

Friend Paul in the video is out of luck here. Lots of us can't wear contacts because of our prescription.

Copied and pasted:
According to the Vision Council of America, approximately 75% of adults use some sort of vision correction. About 64% of them wear eyeglasses, and about 11% wear contact lenses, either exclusively, or with glasses. Over half of all women and about 42% of men wear glasses. Similarly, more women than men, 18% and 14% respectively, wear contacts. Of those who use both contacts and eyeglasses, 62% wear contact lenses more often.

Models look good in anything. The accident rate will skyrocket. People already walk into fountains and other objects using phones.

I agree. Already there are laws in many jurisdictions forbidding use of phones while driving although most will allow it as long as the speaker phone is used. But talking, whether to someone on the phone or to a passenger is unlike focusing your eyes on anything but the traffic.

Why would they?

The pictures clearly shows it covers only one eye, and the video shows that the background is clearly visible at all times right thru the lense.

To fighter pilots fly into mountains distracted by their heads up display?

Pilots don't have other cars and pedestrians coming at them unexpectedly and have all sorts of warning systems if they would happen to.

And more importantly they are highly trained to process all that information while maintaining a focus on their flying.

Comparing the abilities of the average fighter pilot to those of the average soccer mom is ridiculous.

"fighter pilots fly into mountains distracted by their heads up display?"

...ummm, actually sometimes they do. It's called target fixation and it can cause pilots to fly into things because they were completely focused mentally on the hud.

I DON'T CARE!!! I still want this and I want it yesterday. I also want a chording keyboard built into my steering wheel.

So there.

Well with a phone you are looking down at it and not paying attention to your surroundings. This let's you still use your peripheral vision. It is like looking at a transparent phone that you hold up in front of your face instead of down. It will definitely result in some accidents but I'd imagine no more than we already have happening with phones.

Wow factor aside, and there is quite a lot, what about practical concerns:
battery life
processor/memory capabilities
compatibility with existing software
effective 'screen' resolution
data connectivity - assume 3G at least?
voice command recognition in noisy environment
social etiquette of issuing voice commands in public places

From my observations, the Siri users have already blown by the social etiquette standards.

As for your other items, I would bet this is just a bluetooth 3 device, so it can be as dumb as a rock, and your phone can do all the work.

There is the other issue of having something appearing at exactly the same place in your vision path for long periods of time can trick your brain to totally ignore that area. You end up with a blind spot which, while temporary, is annoying.

Excuse me while I wipe up the drool....

Okay, that's better. Now, I wonder how many years it will be before this actually works as seamlessly as portrayed.

I also wonder how many people are gonna get hit by cars crossing the street because they're paying more attention to their HUD than the traffic. LOL!

I gave your comment and "thumbs up" but, I have to admit, I used to be one of those people. I've slacked off a lot since I got the blue-tooth capable car stereo, though.

if this will be released for mainstream consumer with the price of modern smartphones, this will be the end of smartphone handhelds as we know it. and it will also completely revolutionize portable tech. its now time for google to invent something revolutionary as once apple did. google FTW!

I'm curious to see how practical this would actually be. They'd need to tie it into sunglasses or something because if it's sunny out I'm not going to wear these over my sunglasses lol

You wear a "pair" of glasses, you wear a "pair" of jeans, you wear a "pair" of shorts... I could list a couple others but you get the idea.

To me, none of those are "pairs"; a pair of gloves, yes. The rest, no.

i'm guessing the whole OS interface will have ti be redesigned so the HUD will be completely free of the usual icon/widget clutter that we have on smartphones to minimize all possible distractions of the wearer in outisde world. would've been great if that could be truly controlled with just your eye movement and blinking. also, most likely this will requre an additional portable battery unit unless they will figure out to fit a powerful enough battery ( at least for 600 hrs standby) into the frame without sacrificing the sleek design

Dear Dodge :
please take my money & Give me the new Viper ... hell, I'll even work for you
I can't wipe out the drool fast enough

Oh shit, wrong website ...

What was I saying? ... right, the Glasses

Thats a reall cool concept
how does it work ? Is it like the HUD display in the Corvette ?
4 colors display on a transparent background? Or π£π¢€÷¢\£^¢_€¢^£_€=¢£<€™<©>¶¶¢[£^°

Damn it Dodge ... I can't think straight now . You happy now ?

Agreed with cooper3 as well. SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY! TAKE IT ALL! In fact, I've already crated up my first born and FedEx'd him to Google HQ.

These videos remind me of the "we'll all be living on the moon in 5 years" videos from the 60's. I love when I go to Microsoft conferences and they run these videos of "the future" where every surface in the house is a touch display and cell phones are apparently clear plastic credit-card things with no visible circuits or batteries.

I am 100% sure I want these... 100% sure I won't be able to afford them... And 100% sure I would crash into a wall and break them whilst checking the weather...

Also saw a funny comment on this article over at iMore... These are a vision of the future and he's buying a physical book? I Lolled...

Nope. Not for me.
They won't work for people that wear glasses (me), and probably won't be covered under an insurance policy if they did which would make them cost a ton of money. I think they look goofy. If I did use them, though, it would have to be something I can hand to someone and show that it actually works/isn't just a pair of weird looking glasses.

I really like this concept BUT....I wear contacts and glasses. Wearing my glasses right now and I just can't see how my eyes are going to focus on anything so close to them. I can see through the glasses and focus but cannot read anything placed directly on the other side of them. I can't see how I would be able focus and read text. Waiting to see how this is gonna work.

I'm pretty sure I just had my first, real orgasm.

And pretty much second and third everyone else. SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!

I WANT. But, I too, wear glasses. Luckily, I'm near-sighted so I could potentially just take my glasses off and use them on the couch or something, but that doesn't really seem terribly useful now that I say it out loud :)

Still want. How much does LASIK cost these days...?

Pretty sci-fi, and everybody should remember that the video is 100% conceptual.

My only question with a HUD like this is: how tired do your eyes get? I imagine it'd require a bit of strain to focus on something so close, especially once you start aging a little.

I am TOTALLY on board with this product, and will probably buy one the instant that they offer it for sale!

That being said, what I REALLY want is a BrainPal(tm)!

I'll wait to see Larry Page sitting at his desk in 5 years writing checks out to customers for "1000 dollars AND 9 CENTS!!!" because it causes everyone's eyes to loose their ability to focus beyond 3 inches in front of your face.

The dawn of the Cybermen!

Hey, so just wait till people really start bitching about Touchwiz and Sense when it's sitting in front of their eyes all day. Motoblur will make it impossible to see things clearly "oh ho ho".

Uh, these will be a problem..Streaming PORN while working..or the police wearing them during the traffic stop where I offer them a bribe they can't accept now that it is being recorded!!

What the heck-sign me up!! These will be great-and if I can get Citrix to work with them I can work from anywhere! Never be late again-I can clock in and be on my desktop while driving to the beach, at the movies or on my way to work.

I'm not sure, 1 eye? Wouldn't you lose depth perception? How about put an image on both sides and give us full 3D? The possibilities with that could be endless. It could/would look as if something (or someone) was right in front of you.

i would love to see some sort of object recognition software on this. for example, if it told us what breed of dog was in the video.

also, i know this is conceptual, but i don't see ANY lenses on these glasses... how are these images theoretically popping up in to your vision??

Not to be a Debbie Downer, but you'd have to carry a battery pack or have that additional weight on your head

Just looking at the mock up, it wouldn't be too far-fetched to assume that the "glasses" frame is there for those out there who aren't bespectacled like myself... This certainly does seem to be VERY plausible and a logical progression of the bluetooth headset.

Trust me when I say, "SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY", but I wouldn't be surprised if this was released as a peripheral for smartphones, rather than a replacement. I also wouldn't be surprised at all if this was something that we could all buy on the cheap (relatively speaking) by the end of the year.

Put me down for this, let me throw out my jawbone as I say "Welcome to the future!"

Nice! Google knows my mail, interest, searches, calendar/schedule, friends, articles I read, anything I look at online pretty much, who I call, what apps I use, how much data I use, and now they're going to know EVERYTHING else.

Interesting to say the least. I've been looking forward to this sort of technology since I can't remember how long ago when I thought it would be the greatest for interacting with all sorts of applications and what not. It would be extremely useful while driving and walking and possible in other situations as well. The first step to the scifi concept of linking computer to your mind removing the need for the hud and overlaying the images directly using our visual processing element(s).