We have been indulging you with various articles about the much celebrated Google Glass in recent memory, covering the topic from different angles and perspectives. All of Google’s efforts to test and develop the product, alas, lead to the company’s withdrawal of Google Glass from the market.
What went wrong? The most likely culprit of Google Glass’ market flop is the wrong strategy. Or appearance and design. Or application. Anyway, the wearable tech has been recalled to the development team of the Mountain View company in order to overhaul how it looks, apparently to respond to some negative feedback as to Google Glass’ look.
But more important than the look is how it ought to be used. Instead of using Google Glass to spread the use of Internet across the world, many early adopters have used it to intrude the privacy of others and collect data in an unwarranted manner. Which puts everything Google did to the device to shame. And it’s hard to redress those wrongs now that Google Glass has been judged and found wanting.
Of course we can’t downplay the significance of Google Glass’ innovative shot at augmented reality. It has helped to advance technologies that help users to quickly search directions and information in one fell swoop of a voice command instead of clicking away at their mobile device. The kind of information also cannot be taken for granted. Google Glass provides them in an integrated form that helps users understand and use them better.
But all of this seemed to have been disregarded by many early users of Google Glass. What happened was that the early adopters, instead of controlling the gadget, had been turned into unconscious bots that the search giant manipulated to gather private data in the streets, restaurants, and other public places. In other words, it bumped into the widespread and popular battle against privacy infringement activities of governments and large corporations the world over. Put it more bluntly, it upended the real purpose for which Google Glass was created in the first place.
There are hard lessons there, and some of which Google may find enlightening to do better next time it releases another iteration of the wearable tech.
In a time when data could spell the success and failure of an enterprise, small or large, companies like Google whose major source of revenue relies on Internet search must not cross the line of its limitations. The competition is clearly tough, and other companies in the social media field are having an edge over this race. Google’s concern must be how to collect information in a non-intrusive way.