Thu 17 Apr 2014 @ 13.41u / 2628 views

Will Google Glass be a hit with the masses?

So close yet so far away. That accounts for about 99,9% of the world’s population that doesn’t know what it’s like to own Google Glass. Krijn Schuurman, innovative projects manager for a variety of clients in media, healthcare and governments, isn’t complaining: he’s the proud owner and user of the Google Glass beta.

Call it coincidence, but this interview takes place on the day that Google decided to start selling Glass, for one day and one day only. Schuurman dealt with some obstacles before he could be experiencing the crazy options Glass offers its users. After he got his invitation from another Glass Explorer he offered 1500 dollars for the beta version of Google Glass. “Yes, I was that eager and anxious to try it.

”Today, Krijn is a very happy Glass user. “There’s a ton of functions projected right in front of your eye. You can always track where you are and if you’re lost, Glass will show you the way”, explains Krijn. “When a notification sounds, there’s a modest bleep behind the ear and the message pops up at the head up display. No need to grab your phone, it is right there in front of your eye.

Although Google Glass isn’t available for mass consumption yet, people all over the planet are discussing its capabilities and whether or not it will be a commercial success. Google Glass was originally designed for consumers; developers are massively creating apps and functions for organizations and enterprises. The question is: will enterprises adapt and adopt Google Glass a new tool for business?

“The distinction between enterprise and commercial use is hard to make”, Krijn states. “Google Glass is perfect for some functions like projecting a recipe while you’re cooking or navigating through heavy traffic in unknown areas. There is for example a case in which firemen – rushing to a building on fire - wear the Google Glass that projects the building and how to get into it. A team that works independently from Greenwheels, developed the app for that company. The team felt the urge to jump into a gap that might not even exist. The app shows you the way to the car you’re hiring and identifies you when you’re close to your rental car. Another case tells the story of ground flight attendants in an airport wearing Google Glass during the embark process. Because of Google Glass they now look passengers in the eyes instead of staring at their computer screens.”

Although in healthcare and for surgeons Glass can definitely make a difference, it remains hard to predict to what extent Google Glass will affect the masses. “In technology, it’s always hard to predict where it’s going. Some years ago I sat with a big telecom carrier from the Netherlands discussing Internet on mobile phones whilst still owning a Nokia N95. We could not have foreseen things would have evolved so fast with data plans.”

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