Perhaps some of you are old enough to remember the Dick Tracy wrist watches. If you used you imagination, your wrist watch would do magical things. Now, you can let that imagination carry into the latest technological breakthrough of Google Glass and Vuzix M 100. What we have is a wearable computer with an optical head monitor and display. It can be voice activated and hands free.
Google has spent several years developing its Google Glass. The first prototype weighed nearly eight pounds. Now, the present version weighs less than a pair of sunglasses. It comes with a choice of four frames. Other third parties are developing designer frames to add more variety.
The way Glass works is that you swipe a bar on the side either backwards for current events like weather and forward for past events for checking phone calls and photos. Glass can be voice activated by tilting the head upwards at a 30 degree angle. You simply say: OK Glass.” Then you would give it commands like: “Take a Picture” or “Record a Video.”
Glass does come with some pre loaded apps like “Google Now,” “Google Maps,” “Google +,” and Gmail. Beyond that, the field is wide open for developers to create new apps for Glass. Some developer apps are already up and running. They include photo manipulation, translation, news and social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.
Glass has been used in the medical field with Dr. Rafael J Grossmann performing the first live operation with the device. Spanish doctor Pedro Guillen performed a knee implant using Glass and streamed it across the Internet.
In the Healthcare field, videos have been streamed over the Internet to other locations where students can watch and participate in tele conferences. One remarkable video was made by Dr. Raj Vyas at New York University Medical Center that shows a Cleft Lip Surgery demonstration.
Some more unusual uses of Glass are that you can video sex acts from any angle and play them back. You start the video by saying: “OK Glass it’s time.” You stop it by saying: “OK Glass pull out.”
Google Glass is not without critics. The primary issue is that of “Privacy.” Is it ethical to photograph or video persons without their knowledge? Another key issue is “Secrecy.” What happens if Glass is stolen or lost? A hacker has already created an app that can track finger shadows when a person is punching in his/her password. Some Las Vegas Casinos have banned Glass. There is also an issue with Glass and federal secrecy.
Meanwhile a small start up company Vuzix (VUZI) and Chinese Lenovo are threatening Google’s market share of wearable computer glasses. Vuzix”s Recent price is $2.67. 52 week high/low is $5.30/$1.75. Vuzix’s model is the M 100, a completely “hands free” unit. It has enhanced work flow Display and Computer recording features, wireless connectivity, and comes with pre loaded apps that record and playback still pictures and videos. Other apps are compatible with existing Android apps. It has an HD camera for still pictures and video, has Bluetooth connectivity and can pair with any Android device. It comes with a built in GPS system. The Vuzix M 100 won the award at the 2013 Consume Electronics Show for “Best Innovation.”
Google Glass has only about a four hour battery life. Vuzix has solved this problem by adding an auxiliary battery that is worn around the neck.
Google Glass sells for $1500 with and upcoming sale promotion price of $750.00. Vuxix’s sale price is 799.99 (British Pounds.)
Google does not permit adds on any apps and developers cannot charge fees. You cannot resell, loan, transfer or give Google Glass to another person. Google reserves the right to shut down your device.