Big tech companies are racing for their next big business: getting you to set down your iPhone and pick up a pair of smart glasses.
But these things can take time, and the switch won’t happen right away, or even soon.
Currently, smart glasses are too big and expensive; at some point the price will come down, though, and the size will be small enough for everyday use. As a point of comparison, think of the earliest cellphones, which were the size, shape and heft of your average brick.
Microsoft, as CNBC reported, is joining the race with its HoloLens 2 headset, which launched last week, and originally was being tested by the Army to make soldiers more effective on the battlefield.
Apple will put out a version in 2022, the size of the Oculus Quest virtual reality headset. In 2023, Apple will launch a smaller version that can be worn all day instead of just around the house.
Amazon hasn’t been as up front in the race; for now it has the Echo Frames that are currently just a set of regular glasses, but with a speaker and the Amazon voice assistant Alexa built in.
Originally the first one out of the gate was Google, but its much-maligned product was too radical and too early for people’s tastes.
In 2012, Google unveiled the first version of Google Glass, garnering widespread attention, but it soon fizzled as a consumer product because of privacy concerns and its unattractive aesthetics.
People who wore it were termed “gla__holes” because of the creepy nature of using the device. Google went so far as to write a best practices for using it, including listing the “do’s” and “don’ts” of using it in public, even mentioning the term “gla__hole” in the post.