If you’re still looking for a way to get your hands on Google Glass because a) you weren’t able to sign up at Google I/O 2012; b) your #ifihadglass reason wasn’t good enough to make the cut; c) no one you know is a Google Glass Explorer so a referral is out of the question; or d) you’re still on the wait-list with and you think you’ll never move up the list, then you might just want to mark your calendar for April 15, 2014.
Google has announced on the Google Glass’ Google+ page that anyone aged 18 or above and living in the US will be able to purchase Glass and become part of the Explorer program on April 15, starting at 6am PDT/9am EDT. Glass will still cost $1,500 + tax, and every purchase will include a free shade or prescription frame.
Slots are limited so be sure to set a reminder for April 15. If you don’t trust yourself to remember this date, you can sign up here and Google will remind you to come back to the page on specified date and time.
Before Google made the announcement, The Verge broke the news, citing leaks from company employees about the upcoming sale.
This is not the consumer launch of Glass, but a way for Google to expand its explorer program.
With more people using the device, more user feedback will be available for Google to consider and improve the device. Back in December, Google Play Music All Access subscribers received VIP invites to purchase Glass and join the Explorer program. The VIP invites came with the launch of Google Play Music for Glass. The app allows Explorers to listen to both their own music library and Google Play Music All Access right from the Glass.
“Our Explorers are moms, bakers, surgeons, rockers, and each new Explorer has brought a new perspective that is making Glass better. But every day we get requests from those of you who haven’t found a way into the program yet, and we want your feedback too. So in typical Explorer Program fashion, we’re trying something new,” the Glass team wrote on its G+ page.
Others suggest that Google just wants to dispose of old Glass units before it officially becomes available to consumers in general. We’re guessing that Google is just disposing old Glass units before it introduces Glass 2.0. That’s because Google recently launched the Glass at Work program aimed at helping developers create specific apps for vertical business markets. If Google is to focus on specific verticals, the sale of the old Glass units may mean it will be focusing on creating a Glass designed to cater to specific needs of specific business markets. This will probably be a better move than introducing Glass to consumers in general.
There’s still hope for Glass to debut in the consumer market, but it will probably be directed at consumers who have deep pockets or follow fashion trends. Google recently announced a collaboration with Luxottica, the mother company of hip eyewear brands Ray-Ban and Oakley, to develop and distribute a new breed of eyewear for Glass. This collaboration may expand to other brands under Luxottica such as Vogue-Eyewear, Persol, Oliver Peoples, Alain Mikli, and Arnette.