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Eric Schmidt says Google Glass retail units are about another year away

It was last year at Google I/O we saw the action packed debut of Google Glass back when the device was still very much in its infancy. Little more than fancy head mounted camera chock full of potential, developers were only allowed to sign up for early access to the hardware — if they could afford the hefty $1,500 price tag that is.

Since then, we’ve been seeing Google making a strong effort to create buzz for Glass, throwing promotional contests like “If I Had Glass,” even giving headsets away to celebrities and a few everyday developers. You may remember it was last May when Google’s Sergey Brin took Glass to the Gavin Newsome Show, mentioning in the interview that he’d like to see Glass launch as early as 2013, admitting that the chances of that happening were minute.

Now that we’re well into 2013 and the birthing pangs are upon us, many are are wondering what the updated status of Google Glass retail units hitting the Google Play Store is starting to look like. The answer? Well, in an interview with BBC Radio 4, Google’s Eric Schmidt casually mentions that we’re still “probably a year-ish away” before we’ll see consumer-ready Glass. Bummer.

Of course, if you’ve been following the timeline thus far, this does make perfect sense. It’s only been the past few weeks that Google allowed developers to play with Glass at their Glass Foundry hack-a-thon events in New York and San Francisco, but nobody was actually allowed to take any units home. More recently, we’ve seen a portion of Google Glass Explorer Editions begin making their way to a few lucky developers, and I’d be willing to bet Google will make Glass available as gift to developers at this year’s Google I/O. By that time, Google Glass will be in thousands of developer’s hands, and that’s when we can finally see some real development on Glass take-off.

While Eric Schmidt is not directly involved in Google Glass, it does make perfect sense that a year from now, Glass should finally be ready for prime-time and made available to consumers. Let’s just hope that price can come down a bit by then.

[BBC Radio 4 (27:45) | via TheVerge]




  • irishrally

    Operation Cost Reduction

    • NIGHTSCOUT

      Operation figure out how to cheapen the current device to make it “affordable”

      • http://twitter.com/gamercore Chris Chavez

        Well, the specs on this thing are looking pretty good by today’s standards. I’m sure Google planned it that way so that a year from now, it’ll be a little more cost effective but still have enough power to run mini-apps.

        • NIGHTSCOUT

          Hey I’m not complaining….The less I can pay for a set of Glass, the more i’ll have left over for other toys :D

          • No_Nickname90

            *Much approval*

  • Guest

    Hate to be the guy to say something completely irrelevant to the article, but the guy in that picture needs some serious dandruff shampoo :P

    • NIGHTSCOUT

      If you look closely, there are water droplets on his Glass device, so that means those are water droplets in his hair too.

    • OnpointG3

      DAMN! you aint lying

    • james ortiz

      i think thats a woman

    • David Gray

      WIPE THAT WATER OFF YOUR GOOGLE GLASSES A-HOLE!!!!

  • PhaseBurn

    We’re about a year-ish from Google’s general marketing and sale of consumer targeted devices. If you want a Glass right now, you can get one, albeit you’ll be forfeiting a small fortune for the device. In the coming months, it’ll continue to get cheaper and cheaper, until it hits consumer targeted releases, but dev units are already shipping for people who want them. If you didn’t pay up front, you’ll have to wait a bit longer (or turn to eBay or similar) for the opportunity, and in a few months I’m sure Google will be selling them as developer units before “general availability” happens. It’s just what Google does – Gmail was invite only for years, then it was free for people to sign up for on-line. Google Voice, Google+, same thing. Look at the Chromebooks – CR48s given out for free to thousands of people to beta, and then the consumer model released a bit later.

    The biggest thing with Glass is that by itself, it’s going to be very limited. As you’re aware, the APIs don’t allow for running code directly on the device itself, which is a fairly new concept for developers to cope with. They’re used to you running their app directly on your phone/tablet, after all. So it’s going to take some time for the 3rd party apps to appear, and will really take some innovation to make them more than “Unread email count in corner”. This will take some and effort, with people developing against the target devices. As such, those target devices have to be available. And, they are – and further will be, at easier to access levels down the road.

    So don’t take that “yearish” comment as a hard line, it’s much more of a soft limit…

  • No_Nickname90

    Good!! Too many things are already coming out this year. I wouldn’t have the money for it all. LoL!!

  • http://smartic.us bryanl

    Google giving away Glass at IO seems a bit far fetched.

  • Toilet Seat Wipe

    I see Will Smith got a pair.

  • hemipw54

    Well lets see. If I save $100 bucks a month I might just have enough at launch. Forget that, I like other things more than Google Glass.

  • http://stevealbright.com Steve Albright

    How is Eric getting this to work with his Blackberry? (thumbnail image)