Nikhil SubramaniamApr 26, 2013 19:23:38 IST
"Google Glass is the future" seems to be the common narrative these days. But in that future, you may have to contend with the possibility of looking for a power outlet every couple of hours.
One early adopter of Glass has reported back with a story on Quora about the horrible battery life on the wearable head-mounted display. “The battery life is a real problem too,” said Robert Scoble, a liaison officer at a cloud services company, in a post about the limitations of the device. He added: “One six-minute video I did took (away) 20% of the battery.” Scoble put forward an interesting theory about the spartan UI of Glass. “Google designed these to have a very simplistic UI, cards, and have them on screen for just a few seconds, to save battery.”
Looking for a power outlet?
Battery life has been a serious concern with Glass since it was clear it would move away from beta to become a full-fledged consumer product. It was always going to be a challenge cramming a large capacity battery into the svelte frame of Glass, and it seems Google has stumbled here.
Of course, this being a singular report about such an issue, Scoble’s Glass could just have a production defect or faulty wiring. It must also be noted that the Explorer Edition of the device, which were handed over to some pre-order buyers, are clearly not consumer editions. The final software and specifications of Glass could change in the future.
Moreover, just this week, Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman at Google, said it would be at least a year before the public release of the device. So perhaps there’s no reason to proclaim Glass’s death just yet; let’s hope Scoble’s problem is an exception and not the norm.
Another entry on the same Quora post talks about the limitations of Google’s Mirror API. The company doesn’t allow developers to access the camera, microphone, which makes developing facial recognition apps difficult. In addition, developing apps that need access to GPS are problematic as there is no access to user location unless Glass is paired with Android.
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