Google Glass Shades

Google Glass is one of the first devices to come to the wearables market that is truly next-gen. While Glass is available to the public in a beta form called the "Explorer Program," it is not ready for the consumer market right now. Setting aside all of the criticism about it invading people's privacy, the number one problem Google will have when trying to sell the headset is the way the device looks.

I have had Google Glass for over a year now and have loved the whole experience so far. It has changed how I view my public surroundings; however I'm constantly reminded of the awkwardness that comes from wearing a weirdly shaped device strapped to my head. Normally people would not notice something on a stranger's face as they walk by, but because of the unnatural form of the headband in conjunction with the Glass device itself, it tends to stick out like a sore thumb. When first seeing someone wearing Glass, it looks like they are wearing oddly shaped glasses. When that person actually realizes that you are not wearing glasses and does a double take to try and comprehend what you are actually wearing on your face, they tend to focus on the camera or the large battery compartment sticking out from behind the wearer's ear. So the question that is formed, is how to make Glass look normal and attractive enough for the average consumer to wear and use?

When Google first starting rolling out headset to its first round of Glass Explorers, they included two different types of "active shades" for the user to wear with Glass. The first was a traditional dark sunglass attachment that slides in between the nose pieces. These shades made for a perfect companion to Glass as it made it look a bit more normal and it hid the fact that there was a camera and prism protruding from your head. The second lens was the same shape and look as the previous one except that it was clear lens. As more Explorers came into the program, I saw more people wearing the clear lens to attempt to make Glass look more like glasses.

Almost a year after the Explorer Program launched, Google has finally announced several partnerships with different eyewear companies so that they can make their own frames for people to buy along side of Glass. This was and still is a huge deal when it comes to Glass because it is allowing people to wear the device and not have to wear contacts. In addition to allowing more people to use Glass, these new frames have revolutionized the way Glass hardware looks and feels. It went from being a metal band that wrapped around your head with a computer on it, to being a fashionable pair of eyewear that actually enhances the way Glass and the user looks. Personally, after getting my own pair of these new prescription frames, I noticed a lot less awkward stares and even received several compliments about how Glass actually looked nicer and more approachable.

Google Glass GPOP Decal

While these partnerships are a huge leap forward, this option still does not let you fully customize the look and style of Glass. Luckily, there is one Glass Explorer that is taking this task into his own hands. This Explorer is named David Lee and he has started GPOP. GPOP is a reuseable decal that adds a different look and design to your device. With GPOP anyone can purchase skins for the headset that can change the look of the outward facing part of Glass. If you do have Glass or plan on one day getting it, I highly recommend looking over the always evolving collection of GPOP. In addition to what they have on the store, you can download a template from the site and even design your own skin so that you can completely customize your Glass.

So, while Glass in itself is a beautiful piece of hardware that has been crafted to look amazing, it can become an eyesore to look at and can attract a lot of negative attention. As a Glass Explorer myself, I know first hand that every once in awhile I want to change up how my Glass looks. With the use of the different official accessories from Google I could easily hide Glass but with the use of decals from GPOP, I am able to change up the look of Glass for different occasions. Either way, Glass is still in beta and available for anyone over the age of eighteen and living in the United States. So if you want to be apart of the awesome ride that is the Glass Explorer Program, you now know how to customize the look and feel of this wearable device.

 
There are 39 comments

Looking like a Borg is only cool at a Star Trek convention.

DCSholtis says:

Or Comic-Con

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floriyann says:

Looool

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fuzzylumpkin says:

*Gene Hackman voice*

Wrong sir! Wrong!

Resistance is furtive.

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dguillaume says:

The only way to not look like Geek would be if you...... nope I can't think of any way that is possible.

ConTejas says:

Wearing them to film yourself banging a fine woman?

drewgalyen says:

Hey buddy, there are women that are reading these articles too, you know. Try a little respect.

Lol, I can't stand people like you.

GrooveRite says:

This pretty much sums up my assessment as well, lol!! :)

hmmm says:

Google glass and not looking like a geek are an oxymoron.

I have to agree.

GrooveRite says:

Agreed!

bergeronjc says:

The only possible way is by not wearing Google Glass.

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GrooveRite says:

LMAO Yup!!

TenshiNo says:

Don't care. Plan to wear them anyway. Google Glass is an awesome piece of tech. I honestly couldn't care less if someone thought I was a geek.

Hell, they'd be right.

I am surprised no one see's a problem here. Sure, right now, you can tell when someone is wearing a glass. Its obvious. That, and the high price tag will keep this privacy invading technology off the streets for the most part. However, what happens when the price goes down and the whole thing is so small its hard to tell it apart from a regular pair of sun glasses? People's privacy will be invaded without them knowing. I can see a lot of regulation eventually killing this product.

Fisack23 says:

There's still no "invasion of privacy" going on here. You can tell when the camera is on and recording, even more so than when a person is recording with a cell phone. Cell phones are actually more surreptitious than Google Glass -

glazedfaith says:

If someone wants to invade your privacy, there are hundreds of less obvious ways to do it.

Johnny Blake says:

The "invasion of privacy" argument is rubbish. There is no assumption of privacy in public, except by morons.

Posted from my Motorola Moto G

joeyhendrixs says:

Well put Watson, well put.

Warrenisit says:

Bingo

Was just about to say the same thing. Anyone expecting privacy in public is an idiot. And legally in the united States it just doesn't fly, not to mention you can record anyone in public and there's nothing anyone can do.

Impulses says:

It's not like Glass is the smallest camera of it's kind or anything, I really don't get this argument. There's a million other (cheaper) ways to record people on the sly. Now if Glass was doing on the fly face recognition and bringing up personal info as you talk with someone and so forth, maybe, and there's probably someone working on that... Can't fight the future tho, just gotta adapt.

brendilon says:

The reason you don't get the argument is because you're not a paranoid nutcase.

chronophilos says:

This much concern with what people will think of you is a sign of some profound personal insecurity on the part of some glass users and some reactionary ultraconservative attitudes on the part of glass detractors. And the privacy invasion argument is getting old. Especially considering the vast amount of surveillance carried out by governments and corporations, the large number of easily accessible cameras in the pockets of most people making your perceived privacy in public places a thing of the past. This vs. the tiny fraction of glass users and their relative ease of taking pictures of their lunch, kids, friends, pets, or extreme sports.

tr-1 says:

Agreed. Unfortunately it's a fact (reported multiple times) that you are facing a physical attack from paranoid pedestrians. The new laws (even if just proposed) targeting G Glass only adding fuel to fire.

I truly believe within 1-2 generations Glass will become so small you wouldn't know it's there unless you look close at the glasses frame/glass. Perhaps release a model without a camera. Until then, it's a tough sell

Impulses says:

There's already perfectly normal looking frames with spy cams inside, any idiot can buy one and record the living daylights out of his life... I don't see how Glass moves the privacy goal posts, not yet anyway, give developers enough time and processing power and there'll be some very clever somewhat invasive uses though, but we're a ways from that.

TenshiNo says:

Yup. And those spy cams have not only been around for years, but they cost a tiny fraction of Google Glass.

You can get spy camera watches, lighters, pens, necklaces all on eBay for less than $20

Uh no.

fuzzylumpkin says:

I'm a 30 year old wearing a teenage mutant ninja turtles T-shirt...

But wearing glass would be a step too far.

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Warrenisit says:

You all sound like a bunch of pussies. Who gives a rats ass if you look like a geek? Grow some balls.

brendilon says:

Crude, but correct.

TenshiNo says:

+1

Dizfunctions says:

It's not what you wear, it's how you wear it.

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So wear your dildo in a cool way, is what you're saying?

Pedalbflat says:

I would be more tempted to wear it if it looked more symmetrical. Hey, put another battery on the other side. I think designers could much more easily craft great looking frames to increase the subtlety of the device.

I'm sure it's actually quite comfortable to wear, but it does not LOOK comfortable to wear, to me anyways. It just looks so lopsided.

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TenshiNo says:

I don't own a pair, but I did meet a guy a while back who had some and let me play with them for about 30 minutes. I really didn't notice it feeling "lopsided" at all. Just my 2 cents.

I agree,make them look the same on both sides, could balance out the weight and even potentially add more battery to the other side. Could put a mic on both sides as well for stereo video recording. Besides these added benefits it will at least look a little normal to be similar on both sides and shouldn't stick out like a sore thumb.