Smart glasses Google Glass caused a sensation during a presentation in 2012. In the commercial, the search giant demonstrated all the capabilities of the device, including reading and sending messages, photographing and even watching and broadcasting streaming video. However, in practice, everything was not so rosy. Glasses cost $ 1,500 and didn’t have the most elaborate functionality, and users faced various restrictions: for example, they were often not allowed into theaters, for fear of covert shooting.
In the end, search giant smart glasses died as a consumer product and moved into a corporate niche. However, information has now appeared on the web that Google plans to return to the consumer smart-glasses market. According to The Globe and Mail, Google’s parent company, Alphabet, acquired the Canadian wearable device manufacturer North for $ 180 million. The deal is believed to have been completed on behalf of Google.
North produces smart glasses under the Focals brand. In December, the company withdrew the first generation of its glasses from sale and announced Focals 2.0, which, according to the manufacturer, will become the best device of this type. In April 2019, analyst Jon Prosser announced that the first generation of Focal gives an idea of how Apple Glass will look and function. The cost of the device at the beginning of last year was reduced from $ 999 to $ 599, although the demand for glasses remained at a low level. A source close to the North sales department said no more than a thousand pairs of glasses were sold. To order them, customers needed to send a 3D model of their face to the company.
Thus, it is likely that Focals 2.0 will be released under the Google brand name. It is likely that Alphabet will acquire North so that Google is ready to compete with Apple, which is rumored to introduce branded smart glasses in the near future.
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