VC Slams New Google Glass



Alphabet may make good on its promise to revamp Google Glass in the near future, if a recent government filing is any indication.

But despite upgrades, images of the high-tech eyewear are still “the opposite of sexy,” an entrepreneur and angel investor told CNBC on Tuesday.

“If you wear these on the dance floor, people will run from the dance floor,” Jason Calacanis said on “Squawk Alley.” “These devices really look terrible, and they don’t provide that much value.”

But the wearable may be designed less for the dance floor than the office.

The consumer edition of Google Glass was discontinued at the end of January after the interactive goggles, called the “Explorer Edition,” became the target of irreverent humor (such as the term “Glassholes.”) Over the past year, the Glass team has been shuffled under Alphabet company Nest, but the device lived on as part of “Glass at Work.”

Partners for Glass at Work include companies that specialize in telemedicine, electronic health records, museums, energy, manufacturing and quality assurance, to name a few. Speculation about an enterprise-focused hardware release reignited when photos and a users’ manual emerged in a Dec. 28 Federal Communications Commission filing update.

The most recent filings are far from the first rumors surrounding Google Glass 2.0. Reports from The Wall Street Journal and documents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office corroborated the development of at least one new edition.

Meanwhile, potential competitors also have gained ground as virtual and augmented reality becomes a popular feature among Microsoft‘s HoloLens and Facebook‘s Oculus, for instance.

Calacanis said he has his doubts about Glass in particular.

“What you will see, is they will have great application when you’re fixing an engine in a car, and you can see all the different pieces and watch a little tutorial,” Calacanis said. “But it’s very early technology. They’re not going to be a big deal.”

Reprinted by permission.

Image credit: CC by sndrv

About the author: Anita Balakrishnan

Anita Balakrishnan is a news associate at CNBC.

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