Google Glass is generating a considerable amount of buzz for a product that isn’t going to hit the market until later this year. The highly anticipated device has become so popular that other companies are already thinking about producing their own wearable technology.
Analyst Brian White said in a note to investors on Thursday that he believes Microsoft is planning to bring to market a set of Internet-connected glasses next year.
If true, that would put Microsoft in a position to compete with Google Glass, a project with a very public presence despite the fact that it is still in development.
White believes that Google Glass will kick off what he sees as a “major push” in wearable electronics by the biggest tech companies. Among those expected to play a part is Apple, which is rumored to be working on a so-called “iWatch” accessory.
White is the same analyst who predicted that Apple’s new TV would be controlled by a deeply engaging ring on your finger.
Apple’s new TV will come with a tablet the same size as an iPad. Users will be able to send videos from the iTV to the tablet to continue watching a programme as they move around the house.
Apple will also release a small “iRing” that fits on the viewer’s finger, allowing the user to control the screen by pointing, White says.
White also believes that Apple’s “iWatch” will play into Apple’s television ecosystem, complementing the iRing to support interactive TV services and phone calls.
However, if Microsoft were to release its own conception of nose-wearable tech, how might it differ from Google’s?
Might Microsoft Monocles integrate with XBox, so that you could walk down the street and destroy bad people with the flick of an eye?
Might the company get together with Tom Ford or Issey Miyake to create the most tasteful, beautiful, Monocles the world could ever imagine?
While rumors have suggested Apple’s interest in wearable technology lies in the hands, Google — and now, allegedly, Microsoft as well — has shown more interest in the eyes.
Earlier this year it was confirmed that Google Glass will offer compatibility with Apple’s iPhone over Bluetooth, as well as devices running Google’s Android mobile operating system.
Google Glass prototypes also include Wi-Fi and GPS, as well as an integrated camera for snapping pictures.
By wearing Google Glass, users will be able to accomplish voice-driven activities such as sending a text message or answering a call. The integrated display, located to to the upper right of a user’s right eye, displays necessary information to operate the headset.
Many questions have emerged since these glasses invaded the public gaze. “Should one ban people wearing them while driving?” was one question. “How will Newt Gingrich look when wearing them?” was another.
White’s note to investors on Thursday offered no specific indication as to what direction Microsoft’s rumored glasses might take. He expects Google’s product to ship first, in late 2013, before Microsoft’s arrives in the first half of next year, reports AppleInsider.
“It appears to us that Google has made significant breakthroughs around software applications as it relates to this new product,” he said.
“As such, we believe this initiative will kick off a major push into the field of wearable electronics and therefore will be closely scrutinized.”