Google announced today in a blog post that it is shutting down its Explorer program and that the last day for individual consumers to purchase the computer-equipped glasses will be Jan. 19.
There is no question that the wearables market is taking off with the proliferation of health monitors, pedometers and activity trackers like Fitbit, Jawbone, Nike Fuelband, etc. And next year the Apple Watch will likely make the wearable watch the next big thing. Gartner boldly predicted that companies using Glass and similar wearable gadgets could save up to $1 billion a year within the next three to five years.
Reuters has uncovered clear evidence that app developers are dropping the device.
Nine of the 16 app Glass app makers that Reuters contacted admitted they’d abandoned their efforts. Meanwhile, “The Glass Collective,” a venture fund backing Glass apps has gone and now redirects to the Glass page, while three of Google’s key employees on the Glass team have departed.
If an ensuing six-month feasibility study is successful, project coordinator Dr. Paul Porter envisions an ambulance crew someday responding to a stroke victim, using the eyeglass technology to provide real-time video and audio to a neurologist back at the hospital who could then order a clot-busting, brain-saving drug immediately.
Many groups see google glass as an opportunity to provide the clinician an additional channel to review patient information, however, a greater benefit is adding a remote physician into the room with the patient. It might be the new telemedicine disrupter.
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center has decided to try some “disruptive technology” in their ED by using Google Glass as a telepresence platform. This might be a better way for multiple clinicians to interact with the patient. Trying to maneuver around robots, carts, and cameras can be “disruptive” to practicing medicine.