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HomeminewsWhat’s this, Google Glass?

What’s this, Google Glass?

While Google Glass “explorers” in the US have had their hands on the device for some time, an Australian IT journalist has had the opportunity to test Google Glass with an Australian app, designed to help the visually impaired.

The verdict? Shows potential, but still a work in progress.

The Australian Senior Technology journalist Chris Griffith tested Google Glass with an app called ‘What’s this?’, being designed by Telstra, in partnership with developer b2cloud.

The app is activated by a verbal command. Google Glass takes a snap of an object being looking at, sends the image via Bluetooth to a smartphone. The phone relays the image to Google’s servers, which deciphers the image and then returns a description. The process takes about 30 seconds.

The phone relays the image to Google’s servers, which deciphers the image and then returns a description… the process takes about 30 seconds

Griffith said the app correctly identified a range of objects, and excelled in a supermarket, when asked to detail package labels. But, in some cases, the descriptions were “far from comprehensive”.

Another downfall identified by Griffith was that maintaining Google Glass and pairing it with a smartphone would be almost impossible for someone with limited sight.

Google Glass is available in the US, but not in Australia. Telstra said the “What’s this?” app is a work in progress, and there are no plans to offer the service yet.


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