Google Glass was a grand experiment, but the combination of a wary public and sky-high price tag ended up standing in the way of the wearable becoming the next big thing. But while those initial efforts may have petered out, there’s been the promise of bigger, better things from round two – and indeed, we started off this year hearing reports that the Glass project had found new management and would be producing a new Glass headset for release sometime later this year. That idea’s since been supported by additional statements from Google, talking in particular about finding ways to make Glass more commercially appealing. But when could we hope to see this new Glass arrive? We still don’t have a firm ETA, but one of Google’s partners is now speaking up about the next-gen Glass, and says we can expect to see it “soon.”
So says Luxottica, the Italian eyewear firm which had previously been working with Google on the original Glass. Chief Executive Massimo Vian explained, “What you saw was version 1 [of the eyewear]. We’re now working on version 2, which is in preparation.” Maybe even more tantalizingly, he refers to plans already being in the works for what will follow that, admitting, “In Google, there are some second thoughts on how to interpret version 3.”
How soon is “soon,” though? One of the the big ideas that has been hanging over this Glass re-launch is that it needs to be commercially ready-to-go – no more using the public (“Explorers”) as beta-testers. While that might suggest a longer rather than shorter wait, could we at least be getting a taste of the new Glass sometime in the next couple months – maybe at I/O? We’re certainly keeping the possibility in mind.