Google ends sales of Glass, its augmented reality smartglasses
CNN Business reports that Google will no longer sell the latest enterprise version of Google Glass.
The company’s announcement this week will effectively end an innovative but unsuccessful wearable product line from another era that many consumers may have assumed was long gone.
First unveiled in 2013, Google Glass was initially marketed to a general audience, promising to give people access to a computer on their face instead of taking out a phone. But according to CNN Business, smart glasses were discontinued in 2015 after beta versions failed to gain traction due to their high price tags, clunky designs and concerns about privacy.
Google then shifted focus from consumers to enterprise. The first enterprise version of Glass, announced in 2017, was pushed for use in industries such as manufacturing and logistics. Enterprise Edition 2, released in 2019, was Google’s last attempt to save the Glass product. But CNN Business said the $999 product failed to catch on.
“Thank you for over a decade of innovation and partnership,” Google wrote on its FAQ page announcing the decision. According to CNN Business, the company will continue to support the enterprise edition that was phased out until September.
Google did not respond to CNN’s request for comment.
Google’s decision to discontinue the product comes amid cost-cutting at the company. Like many of its peers, Google recently announced plans to lay off thousands in response to fears of a recession and changing pandemic demand for digital products.
Still, the dream of Google Glass lives on. Snapchat’s parent company sells Spectacles, another set of smartglasses that have struggled for years to gain traction. CNN Business said that Apple was reportedly working on augmented reality glasses. And even after Glass failed, Google said last year it was continuing to test other AR glasses.
“Augmented reality (AR) is opening up new ways to interact with the world around us,” the company said in a blog post last summer. “It can help us access essential information quickly and easily – such as understanding another language or knowing the best way to get from point A to point B.”
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)