Google is back to pushing its much-anticipated augmented reality glasses, and it's doing a better job of it.
The company announced on Wednesday that it's opening up testing on its Google Glass project to the public through a competition geared at programmers that invites applicants to make a case for why they should be allowed to play with the the technology. The search giant has also just launched the new ad below, which makes the whole idea of what's essentially a voice-activated smartphone that you wear on your face seem more viscerally exciting—and less intrusive—than it did in the initial teaser from last spring, which leaned more toward the off-kilter geeky and curiously conceptual.
The new spot, from Google Creative Lab and m ss ng p eces, still errs on the side of relentlessly quirky, casting potential users in roles like aerialist, ice sculptor and propeller-plane pilot. We'd venture those demographics, even combined, make up a relatively small portion of the population. Nonetheless, it includes enough range—and enough of the more mundane but still meaningful moments, like trips to the park with your kids or an elderly relative's birthday—to illustrate why anyone who isn't a gung-ho adventurer might care.
Perhaps most important, it illustrates a social tech experience that's better integrated into a first-person view, without digital thought bubbles popping into your field of vision, or the awkwardness of having to hold up your camera to snap a photo or shoot a video. (Now you can just shout commands at yourself instead.) It's the sort of concept that, if realized, is bound to take Internet-aided narcissism—"Hey, look at what I'm doing!"—to new heights, while also delighting wannabe cyborgs everywhere.
It's also easy to see that it could be a lot of fun.
Executive Producer and Creative Direction: Google Creative Lab
Production Company: M ssn g P eces