Yes, you read it right, there will be no more almost public beta of Google Glass Explorer version available after 19th January. Google taking the product to next phase, making ready for a possible late 2015 release. Keep reading.
Today Google sent out mails to all Google Explorer about this news. They also informed “new feature development on the Explorer Edition will stop while we work on the next version of Glass, but you can still call or email us anytime with questions, thoughts or feedback.”
They have shared a “Glass Vol 001” to honor all Google Glass Explorer.
What does it mean for present Glass Explorer?
Here is my understanding –
1) Google will stop selling Glass, not sure whats going to happen to accessories, so far it seems Google will keep selling.
2) I think Google is going to shut down all Google Glass Explorer office, like they had in SF, NYC and few other cities.
3) You will not get any phone support after 19th.
4) Maybe no more replacement and warranty*. (*Extended)
What does it mean for others?
1) You will not be able to buy an Google Glass Explorer edition, the invite or play store will not work. But there could be sales at places like eBay, which is at your own risk type.
2) You have to wait for a public release or in whatever form Google brings it back.
There are few things more interesting though.
1) Google will keep selling Glass to corporate partners.
2) We could also understand when Google will release next version of Glass its going to be different, from hardware at least. The type of conversation we are seeing for last 6-12 months, are not positive, so changes are coming.
3) Glass team is departing from Google X research lab.
4) Ms. Ivy Ross will lead Google Glass new team.
5) Ms. Ross and her team will report to Tony Fadell, head of Nest Labs, which Google acquired for $3.2 billion last year.
When anything new could come up
We do not have any answer or clue, Google wrote “for now, no peeking“.
PS: Yes, that’s me posing with Google Glass. I was also an early Explorer, and had a fun ride. If you ask me what I feel after reading this news, I will say, I am a bit confused now, maybe the same way Google also looks confused. Its a super advance piece of hardware, but price and battery made it complex. The usability takes time, its an advance piece of gadget, vision of future is important, but keep a focus is also very important. Its true Glass have use cases in many industry, but like any new tech, you start on perfecting one single job, then move into phase. Even if you a big company like Google with Billions of dollar in hand and millions of people willing to pay for test, you still need focus. So, main question will be still is it an advance head mount camera, or an advance phone, or semi VR device, or a show piece to impress others?
You could read another article at WSJ
Your opinions in comments are appreciated.