While some consumers have been skeptical of Google Glass since it was first announced, it looks like the wearable tech is finding initial interest in the workplace, including areas such as law enforcement, medicine, manufacturing and athletics. In contrast, bars in San Francisco have already banned patrons from wearing Google Glass. Google is making the product available to the public later this year, but critics are skeptical of how it will be received by general consumers.
“I’m sure Google would love this to be a consumer technology, from a scale perspective, but I’m just not sure it is,” said Chris Curran, chief technologist for the United States advisory practice of PwC. “It’s a technology that’s searching for problems to solve, and it’s really a matter of where do the problems emerge?”
“So far, the most obvious place seems to be jobs that do not involve sitting at a desk, but where a screen with an Internet connection would come in handy,” reports The New York Times. “Eighty percent of workers have these jobs, according to Wearable Intelligence, which makes wearable technology software for them.”
Google is trying to capitalize on this population, and recently announced a Glass for Work program that will provide tools designed specifically for business users, such as tech support.
Critics are skeptical that these people will adopt Google Glass, since the product could raise numerous issues with privacy concerns in the workplace.
Regardless, investors and entrepreneurs still see potential in the product. Especially since there are numerous jobs, such as construction, where workers need to have their hands free but would still benefit from being able to access a screen and the Internet.
Glass is already starting to be used in hospitals, police departments and construction companies.
“Though many technologies, like smartphones, started in the workplace and later earned widespread adoption, companies like Google go after the consumer market because of its potential to create runaway hits,” notes the article. “For Google, though, persuading consumers to put on Glass is going to be the hard part.”