AR glasses are coming, and while Meta, Apple, and Snap continue to develop their new digitally-enabled devices, Google is also looking to advance its AR efforts, with public testing of its AR glasses set to begin soon.
As Google explains it:
“Starting next month, we plan to test AR prototypes in the real world. This will allow us to better understand how these devices can help people in their daily lives. And as we develop experiences like AR navigation, it will help us take into account factors like weather and busy intersections, which can be difficult, sometimes impossible, to fully recreate indoors.”
Google hasn’t shared any new images of its AR device apart from the frameworks in development above, but it did provide this video of its ‘Proto-29’ AR glasses in development at its I/O conference earlier this year.
Based on Google’s description, it sounds like these are the goggles you’ll be trying out, with AR prototypes ‘that look like normal glasses with a screen on the lens and visual and audio sensors’.
Testing will be limited to select areas in the US, with strict limitations on where testers can operate and the types of activities they can participate in..
In other words, San Francisco: Testing will take place in San Francisco, around the search giant’s Mountain View headquarters (note this is purely my own speculation, Google hasn’t specified the areas where they will take place). tests).
“We will start small-scale testing in public environments with AR prototypes used by a few dozen Googlers and select trusted testers. These prototypes will include on-lens displays, microphones, and cameras, but will have strict limitations on what they can do. For example, our augmented reality prototypes do not support photography or videography, although the image data will be used to enable experiences like translating the menu in front of you or showing you how to get to a nearby coffee shop.”
Google says it will be testing translation, transcription and navigation elements, while also getting a better idea of how the glasses work in the real world, as opposed to the closed lab environment.
It’s another step into the AR-enabled future, where eventually we’ll all have digital display screens superimposed on our vision at all times. Which sounds like it could lead to information overload. I mean, our attention spans have already evolved due to advances in connectivity, with trends like short-form video likely driving this even further, allowing people to process more and more information at faster speeds.
Having similar prompts and pointers, at all times, will speed you up even more, and while most people like the concept of having their own Iron Man-like information display in front of their eyes, it will be interesting to see how this plays out. in practice, and what that means for broader consumer trends.
Will our brains ever be able to turn off and what will that do for our health? Will Refresh and Visine see a sudden increase in sales due to being overworked?
Will AR open up all the new opportunities for ads and promotions, right in front of the people looking at your store, and how will that affect best practices and processes in the digital ad industry as a whole?
There are a lot of questions, which will probably take years to answer, but it’s getting closer, with several AR lenses getting closer to release.