In 2013, Google invited 8000 individuals to use and evaluate Google Glass 1.0 by visiting its offices. The company subsequently released Google Glass Explorer Edition with a LED illuminated display, touch pad, and camera. It also allowed users to access several third-party apps along with widely used Google applications like Gmail, Google+, Google Maps, and Google Now. Despite being promoted as a sought-after sci-fi-looking gadget, Google Glass failed to impress users. It was mainly due to a number of shortcomings – high price tag, poor battery life and limited number of apps.
Google subsequently discontinued the production of its wearable computer. Many websites and newspapers speculated that Google was redesigning and improving Google Glass to meet user expectations and deliver richer user experience. However, many analysts also believed that Google Glass is already dead. Google surprised analysts and bloggers by announcing Google Glass Enterprise Edition – second iteration of its wearable glasses – for selected companies in USA. It further allowed authorized Glass partners to develop enterprise solutions for Google Glass 2.0.
Understanding Important Aspects of Google Glass 2.0
Explorer and Enterprise Versions
Google Glass 1.0 (Explorer Edition) was developed by targeting consumers. But Google Glass 2.0 (Enterprise Edition) is developed for enterprises and businesses. The enterprise can avail custom Glass devices and solutions from Glass Partners according to their precise needs. Glass partners can develop custom Glass solutions. They also customize solution according to precise business needs and provide the required training and support. At the same time, developers also have option to build new solutions for Google Glass Explorer Edition. Google further allows developers to run Android code directly on Glass devices through Android-based APIs. It even recommends Android app developers to follow Glass pattern and style, and comply with launch guidelines.
Like Google Glass 1.0, by design, Google Glass 2.0 is also a hands-free device. But Google Glass Enterprise Edition comes with features to meet business needs and increase employee productivity. For instance, the users can activate and access the required app simply by saying “OK Glass”. Hence, they can access instruction or perform specific tasks while focusing on core activities and removing distractions. Google Glass 2.0 enables employees to access relevant information and instructions instantaneously through training videos, annotated images, and quality assurance checklists. At the same time, a user can also use Google Glass 2.0 to connect with coworkers instantaneously and smoothly. He can even take advantage of livestream to make coworkers see what he is seeing.
Network of Glass Partners
At present, Google distributes Glass devices and solution exclusively through a network of Glass Partners – Augmedix, Aira, EyeSucceed, Hodei Technology and Picavi GmbH. These authorized enterprises will provide as well as support Glass devices and solutions. However, the Glass devices and solutions will providing by individual companies will differ. For instance, the unique assistive solutions provided by Aira will improve independence of blind and low vision people. On the other hand, EyeSucceed develops solutions to address real-time challenges faces by food industry by integrating artificial intelligence (AI) and wearable technology. Hence, enterprise users have to pick specific Glass Partners according to their precise business needs.
Varying Business Uses and Needs
As noted earlier, the Glass devices and solutions developed by individual Glass Partners vary. Hence, an enterprise user has option to choose from a wide range of Google glass devices and solutions according to its business model and needs. The information posted on its official website suggests that Google Glass is currently being used by enterprises from varying sectors and with varying business needs. For instance, DHL uses Google Glass to accelerate pickup and reduce errors by providing picking instructions to employees directly through their wearable gadgets. Likewise, GE Aviation uses Google Glass Enterprise Edition to provide instructions to mechanics instantaneously through videos, images, and animations. Hence, custom Glass devices and solutions will help enterprises from varying sectors – manufacturing, logistics, healthcare and field services – to make their employees productive and processes better.
On the whole, Google has redesigned Google Glass for enterprise users. The enterprises can use Google Glass 2.0 to make their employees more productive and simplify specific business operations. Google even allows authorized Glass Partners to build custom enterprise solutions for Google Glass 2.0. The enterprise solutions will contribute towards making the redesigned edition of Google Glass popular and increase adoption rate in the long run.