A new report out of Fortune today says that Google will be ending its beta-style Glass Explorer program this year, and will be spinning Glass into a separate business that will fall under Nest CEO Tony Fadell’s leadership.
Over the last few months, the buzz on Google’s Glass – the wearable face computer that makes people look and act dumb – has died down considerably. While excitement over Glass in enterprise scenarios has been rising, there’s been little to no interest in Glass by or for consumers, with Google’s plans for a consumer-version of Glass still wrapped up in mystery. As such, it’s no surprise that Google is looking to move on from Glass and give Fadell a shot at making it work as a consumer product.
There aren’t too many other details besides that; the division that had spawned Glass – Google X – will be sending Glass over to Nest, and apparently Fadell and the lieutenant in charge of Glass – Ivy Ross – will take the device closer to a straight up consumer release. First on the list of goals, I would imagine, is making it not cost $1,500, since that is crazy.
While some may see Google X’s decision to send Glass out the door as a bad sign, I think that Nest’s inheritance of the project signifies a much better future for the wearable. The Nest thermostat and smoke detector are both great devices that sort of defy success by their very nature. Who ever thought that they would sell and work so well? Glass, too, seems to need Fadell’s guidance to become viable, desirable products. I have my doubts that Glass can survive in its current iteration, especially at its current price point, but if anyone can turn this piece of hardware around, it’s Fadell. Let’s hope we find out more about the future of Glass soon.
In the meantime, if more news on this story develops, we’ll update this post. Stay tuned.