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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

April 2, 2014 at 5:56 PM

Google pitching Glass in Seattle

You still can’t buy Google Glass headsets without an invitation, but the company is bringing a batch of them to Seattle for the public to try at a promotional event this weekend.

Google image of Glass

Google image of Glass

The free event is part of a marketing roadshow for Glass, the buzz of which has faded a bit since the company distributed a few thousand units to “explorers” for testing and app development last year. About 300 of the Glass explorers are in the Seattle area.

Glass headsets have a stamp-sized display on which you can use some Google services when the device is connected wirelessly to a nearby smartphone or WiFi. It also runs apps designed for Glass and takes photos and videos. It can be operated with voice commands, gestures or by tapping and sliding your finger on a touchpad on the frame.

(After my test of the device, I decided that its cool factor and capabilities aren’t worth the $1,500 cost and discomfort of having Google on my forehead.)

Now the company’s hoping to reinvigorate the fledgling platform through a new partnership with the parent company of the Ray-Ban and Oakley, which will incorporate Glass display technology into future models of its eyewear.

Google’s also hoping to build more buzz with public showings of the product. It’s encouraging attendees to talk up the event and their impressions of Glass on social media.

The Seattle event takes place Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Sodo Park, 3200 First Ave S. You must RSVP through http://seattlethroughglass.splashthat.com/.

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