Google is building an AR headset, too

Google has recently begun ramping up work on an AR headset, internally codenamed Project Iris, that it hopes to ship in 2024, The Verge reports, citing “two people familiar with the project who requested anonymity to speak without the company’s permission.”

A Glasshole wears Google Glass, circa 2013
A Glasshole wears Google Glass, circa 2013

Alex Heath for The Verge:

Like forthcoming headsets from Meta and Apple, Google’s device uses outward-facing cameras to blend computer graphics with a video feed of the real world, creating a more immersive, mixed reality experience than existing AR glasses from the likes of Snap and Magic Leap. Early prototypes being developed at a facility in the San Francisco Bay Area resemble a pair of ski goggles and don’t require a tethered connection to an external power source.

Google’s headset is still early in development without a clearly defined go-to-market strategy, which indicates that the 2024 target year may be more aspirational than set in stone.

I’m told that the Pixel team is involved in some of the hardware pieces, but it’s unclear if the headset will ultimately be Pixel-branded. The name Google Glass is almost certainly off the table, thanks to the early blowback (remember “Glasshole?”) and the fact that it technically still exists as an enterprise product.

MacDailyNews Take: And, as soon as Apple shows them what to do, Google will surely bring it to market lickety-split! (See also: Ming-Chi Kuo moves his Apple AR/VR headset launch date from Q2 to Q4 2022.)

Hopefully, Apple current lawyers are better at their jobs than those tasked with protecting the iPhone.

Google Android before and after Apple's iPhone

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    1. More likely they’ll bootstrap off their prior experiences with consumer Google Glass, and added feedback from their current Enterprise users, then add ideas taken from products from Snap and Magic Leap. Google Glass is Google’s “Newton”. IMO Samsung will take that and improve it for the masses which Apple will then take ‘inspiration’ from. The advantage Apple may have is the tighter integration with their existing products. What remains to be seen is if Apple’s AR product will replace or simply supplement the iPhone.

  1. Reports note the device may include a sub-cutaneous diode (just a light prick), that will enable the device to read and send subject’s thoughts to Google for processing. In turn, the subject will be sent listings of products you’ve always wanted, but never imagined.

    1. Walt Distope with thread winning post. Hilarious!
      It’s not bad business for Google to let Apple R&D it, tinker it to death, perfect it, then work off Apple’s model. Apple has done this too, it’s just good business (making a better mouse trap, as they say).

      Apple has the advantage on brand name but Google is very widely known name and has that advantage on pricing. They can sell at cost with the money maker being the tons of user data fed to SkyNet. But I’ll say that Google recently has semi-ish rethought this ‘at cost’ or even loss leader biz plan. Glad to see it too, as a stock holder. Being the cheap priced, good enough product is already covered by Amazon and a number of China based companies. Google has enough gravitas to put out top end products that can command premium prices.

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