Google Glass’s Enterprise Edition Makes Perfect Sense

GOOGLE-GLASS-LOGOThere was a bunch of buzz over the US holiday weekend that Google has filed with the FCC information about an enterprise version of Google Glass, possibly called the GG1.

It makes perfect sense. Most of the activity in smart headwear over the last few quarters has been in the enterprise space, not the consumer market. Google and Intel both have development deals with optics giant Luxottica, but Intel in particular has been charging ahead with its purchases of Recon Instruments and a controlling interest in Vuzix. In addition, use cases for enterprises — everything from medical to field service to energy to warehouses — have started to emerge; consumer applications sort of stop at gaming, which is a limited market.

That said, there will have to be some fairly fundamental changes to Glass to make it enterprise-friendly. Android, for instance, is not HIPAA-approved; every medical trial of Glass had to start by stripping out the operating system. Its display — at least, the display we last saw — has been far surpassed by other vendors, who have done a good job of planting their own flags in the market.

And an FCC filing is anything but a product launch. If it takes Google another six months — or even three months — to hit the market with an enterprise device, that’s more time for more established players to make their marks. By the time Google gets back into the business, it will have lost anything like a first-mover advantage in a field it helped invent. That’s an unusual position for Google, and it will be interesting to see how it competes in that environment.

Casio Smart Watch Coming in March at $400: WSJ

Casio MTGS1000BD-5A_xlarge

Get ready for another big-name entrant in the smart watch business. Japanese electronics maker Casio is prepping a $400 device for next spring. Casio president Kazuhiro Kashio sat down with the Wall Street Journal to talk about his company’s extensive history with electronic watch features and what it’s planning for the future. He didn’t reveal much in […]

Continue reading...

Fitbit Helps Debunk Rape Charge

Here’s an odd one: a woman who claims she’d been raped had her story debunked by her fitness tracker. Lancaster Online reports that Jeannine Risley, of St. Petersburg, Florida told police that she was asleep when she was awakened at midnight March 10 by an intruder who had broken into the house she was staying […]

Continue reading...

Is Fitbit Really Outselling Apple?

-1x-1

Slice Intelligence, which measures tech sales by monitoring e-mails to a recruited user panel, tells Bloomberg that Fitbit’s sales are outpacing those of the Apple Watch — once you discount Apple’s initial sales surge. The figures they present do appear to be compelling, but there may be less there than meets the eye. Fitbit apparently […]

Continue reading...

Hands-on with Eargo, a New Approach to Hearing Aids

Eargo

Hearing aids often meet with resistance from the very people who could use them most—either because they’re not comfortable, they’re too obvious, or they’re too expensive. Startup Eargo` aims to transform the market by solving all three of these common issues. At first glance, you wouldn’t even think Eargo is a hearing aid. The design, […]

Continue reading...

Smart Fabric Maker Clothing+ Acquired By NYSE-Listed Jabil Circuit

jabil-logo

The Finnish smart fabric company Clothing+ was bought earlier this month by Florida-based Jabil Circuit, an NYSE-traded company (NYSE: JBL) that does electronics prototyping and manufacturing. Clothing+, which made the sensor fabric in the Victoria’s Secret smart bra, has been in business for 17 years, integrating electronics into textiles. Its first heart monitor shirt was produced in […]

Continue reading...

Google X Shows Health Tracking Wristband

Google is apparently working on a health-related wristband, but don’t expect to be able to buy it anytime soon — or ever. Bloomberg is carrying a story about a wristband from Google X — the research division of Google — that will be able to measure pulse rate, heart rhythm, skin temperature, and local environment. […]

Continue reading...

Android Wear Gets 17 New Branded Watch Faces

HelloKitty

If you’re bored with the watch faces built into Android Wear, hang on: there are 17 more about to arrive that will let you express your individuality through large brands. TechCrunch has the whole list and illustrations, but suffice to say that if you always wanted Angry Birds or Hello Kitty on your wrist, this […]

Continue reading...

Crowd Ownership is Now OK. What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

If you really really really like a crowdfunded project, it is at last possible not only to buy a pre-release product, but to actually buy into the company. Under terms of the 2012 “Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act” that went into effect last week, you no longer have to have an annual income of $200,000 […]

Continue reading...

Wearable Tech Insider Podcast Posted for June 19

New podcast’s up. Coverage includes Fitbit IPO, Intel buys Recon, Hitachi’s happiness monitor (sort of), and Augmate’s enterprise management tool. Dan Rosenbaum, producer and host, with Health Tech Insider‘s Alfred Poor and music by Michael Roth.

Continue reading...