Google Glass may not support prescription lenses at launch
March 11, 2013
Update: Google announced on its Project Glass page (via Engadget) that Glass will indeed support prescriptions lenses "later this year." Google adds that it's "still perfecting the design" of prescription lenses with Glass, which likely explains the quote in the original article below.
If we’re to believe the stereotypes, nerds and glasses go hand in hand. Hollywood teaches us that a pair of specs is all it takes to transform a stunning actor or actress into an awkward wallflower, or a mighty superhero into a clumsy dweeb. If there’s any truth to this cliché, then some of Google’s most tech-savvy customers may have to wait a bit longer than the general population to enjoy Google Glass.
According to CNET, Google has gone on record as saying that Glass isn’t quite ready for prescription lenses. Jay Nancarrow, Global Communications & Public Affairs Manager at Google, reportedly said that Google currently has no solution for the already-bespectacled:
- We’re preparing additional models that are designed to work for people who require prescription lenses [...] We haven’t released specific timelines for these, however.
So – at least at launch – the first significant pair of consumer smart glasses might not work as traditional glasses. Sounds like a missed opportunity, right?
Perhaps. But it might be a necessary – and temporary – tradeoff. Google’s biggest challenge with Glass is to cut down on the geek factor, and make it something “regular” customers will want to wear.
If that means prioritizing appearance over prescription lens compatibility, then so be it. In the meantime, the "nerds" just may have to switch to contact lenses (and perhaps transform into a Superman or prom king in the process).
Google said that Glass will launch later in 2013 (Q4 sounds like a safe bet). Each pair is expected to retail for around US$1,300-1,400.