Technology News

Google Glass Explorer Version Discontinued, But Project Not Abandoned

Google has announced big changes to its Google Glass wearable project, saying it will stop selling the first version of Glass to consumers through its Explorer program beginning January 19.

Google announced the decision to discontinue the first version of Google Glass in a post on Google+.

[quote text_size=”small” author=”– Google”]

We’re closing the Explorer Program so we can focus on what’s coming next. January 19 will be the last day to get the Glass Explorer Edition. In the meantime, we’re continuing to build for the future, and you’ll start to see future versions of Glass when they’re ready.


Google will give Tony Fadell, a former Apple executive, oversight of the Glass initiative as the company considers the next direction to take. Fadell will still run Nest Labs, a smart home device company purchased by Google last year. Glass will move from the Google X research lab to a stand-alone unit that will be led by Ivy Ross, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Google has said it has plans to release a new version of Glass sometime this year, but no details on timing have been provided.

The move sems to be in line with the new direction Google announced last year after it became clear that businesses were a better market for Glass. Google said it will still support businesses that use Glass.

On Thursday, Intel seemed to confirm via Twitter that it will be powered by the new version of Glass.

The first version of Glass was released in 2013 to individuals who applied to test the $1,500 device through the Explorer program. The device became available to the general public a year later, but sales remained very small amid complaints of privacy and shortcomings.

The Glass program was enthusiastically backed by Google’s co-founder, Sergey Brin. Early users were excited about the project which allowed them to receive information via a small screen above the right eye and take pictures and videos. Many tired of the device soon, complaining that it did not evolve as promised and many restaurants and businesses began banning its use, according to the BBC.

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