Google starts testing AR/VR headgear prototype in the wild to take on Apple Glasses with real-time translation and navigation
Not to be outdone by Apple which by all reputable analyst counts is preparing to release its tentatively named Glasses AR/VR headset next year, Google is ramping up its own efforts in the field. Resurrecting its own Glass project that was last left with an Enterprise Edition AR headgear for business customers, Google announced that it will start testing prototype Google AR/VR Glass devices in real-world scenarios after previewing them in the lab for the last couple of years.
The team from Mountain View recently teased what its renewed AR/VR push can do by demonstrating the real-time translation you see in the video below with the fresh prototype. Now, however, Google will dole out the headgear to its own employees as well as select tech personalities in order to gain valuable feedback from using the glasses in the wild.
These prototypes will include in-lens displays, microphones and cameras — but they’ll have strict limitations on what they can do. For example, our AR prototypes don’t support photography and videography, though image data will be used to enable experiences like translating the menu in front of you or showing you directions to a nearby coffee shop.
The US$1500 Google Glass device experiment ran into controversies involving privacy issues with filming at public places or security ones while driving, so Google moved its development into the enterprise space. The new Google AR/VR prototype device, however, may be intended to clash directly with Apple's Glasses in the consumer realm, so Google wants to get these right from the get-go.
"Testers are prohibited from testing in schools, government buildings, healthcare locations, places of worship, social service locations, areas meant for children (e.g., schools and playgrounds), emergency response locations, rallies or protests, and other similar places," says Google. If you want to participate in the fresh batch of AR/VR glass research, you can try your luck with Google's application form for the project.