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Google Glass banned in UK cinemas (0)

A group of movie houses in the United Kingdom has announced it is banning Google Glass wearers from entering its cinemas, over concerns that the wearable device could record and distribute bootleg copies of films. "As a courtesy to your fellow audience members, and to prevent film theft, we ask that customers do not enter any cinema auditorim using any 'wearable technology' capable of recording images," the Cinema Exhibitors' Association (CEA) said in a statement. "Any customer found wearing such technology will be asked to remove it, and may be asked to leave the cinema." The announcement is another blow to the Google Glass, which has since been struggling to project a positive image to the public, especially those who are creeped out over its possible privacy issues. It is not the first time cinemas cracked down on Google Glass. In the United States, the Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas announced last month that visitors in their cinemas--spanning seven states--will not be allowed to wear the device inside the auditorium once the lights dim. Google Glass users could claim that its 45-minute battery life would make it impossible to record a full-length feature movie. However, bootleggers are known for splicing recorded movie clips with other images and create DVDs out of it. Google Glass was launched last week in the United Kingdom, offering its beta Explorer Program to any local resident over 18 years of age. Each gadget costs £1,000 (about US$1,700). Source: PC Mag Read More

Diane von Furstenberg designs new frames for Google Glass (0)

Google reveals its latest line of Google Glass, all designed by renowned fashion icon Diane von Furstenberg. The DVF | Made for Glass collection is a collaboration between tech and fashion. The collection features five new frames and eight new shades, which will be available on Google Glass online store and Net-a-Porter beginning June 23. This includes a variety of sunglasses, which aspiring Glass Explorers can choose between gray, rainbow, and brown hues. These computer-equipped sunglasses include a DVF logo in the corner. Google has previously partnered with luxury company Luxottica, which would eventually launch a line of Google Glass with Ray-Ban and Oakley-branded frames and shades. The Google Glass devices designed by Diane von Furstenberg will cost a tad higher than the usual $1,500, starting at $1,620. Source: Mashable Read More

Google Glass expanded beta test available in US (0)

If you reside in the United States and you have $1,500 to spare, you can now avail a Google Glass. In an article posted on Google's official blog, the device is currently in expanded beta test mode. The announcement comes after selling the wearable computer for just one day last month. It was selling like hot cakes, Google almost ran out of stock and has since built its inventory for its expanded beta test, with an aim to beef up its Explorers program. The company also said a consumer version of the device is expected to be shipped later this year. Google started its Explorers program along with its Glass launch about two years ago, which aims to gather data and reactions from early adopters of the device so Google would be able to refine and improve on both hardware and software. Buyers would also be able to choose their color, earbud type, and frame style (including an option for people wearing prescription glasses). Source: CNN Money Read More

Google Classroom offers assignment hub (0)

Google has launched a program for students and teachers. Available on Google Apps for Education, the Google Classroom provides school teachers and students with a central hub to create, store, organize, and provide feedback for assignments. Currently on beta, the service is available in select schools in the United States. This would allow teachers to create and collect "paperless" assignments, ask questions and comment with students in real time, and create Drive folders for each assignment and each student. Teachers can even keeps tabs on which student has yet to complete their assignment. Aside from assignments, teachers and professors can also distribute projects, worksheets, and group work among others to students. School mentors interested to try out the service can apply for a preview, but we recommend waiting it out until September when Google Classroom will be available to any school using Google Apps for Education. Source: Forbes Read More

Google Maps update includes Uber integration (0)

Google has announced its Google Maps will be beefed up with new features, including offline support and integrating it with other apps like Uber. With other major tech players like Microsoft and Apple offering mobile mapping services, Google believes the latest features in its Google Maps could edge out the competition. The offline mode enables users to save routes and locations so they would be able to access it even without WiFi or a decent cellular signal. Offline maps can be found under profiles. Users can now also search bars and restaurants according to filters such as opening hours, price, and user ratings. Meanwhile, Uber app users can also integrate it with Google Maps and find out if hitching a ride would be more convenient than public transportation or walking home. The Uber app can also be activated straight from Google Maps. Other new features include displaying which lane to stay in to avoid missing the highway exit, as well as integrating Street View on place cards. Source: ZDNet Read More

Patent for camera-equipped Google contact lenses filed (0)

Google plans to take wearable device to the next level, even when its Glass has yet to become wide available in the market. The tech giant has filed a patent application to the USPTO to embed tiny cameras in contact lenses. These Google contact lenses are aimed for various uses, such as providing basic input for a contact-based assistive device for people with visual impairment. Also, as what many Google Glass haters may have thought, these contact lenses can capture images of what the wearer sees. This follows Google's previous patent application of developing "smart contact lenses" that would monitor the wearer's blood sugar levels, providing a non-invasive method of measuring it among diabetics. There is a possibility that both patents would be combined for future Google contact lenses. If the company is bent on shipping these lenses soon, Google needs to tackle the growing negative perception among wearable devices that can take images of people without their knowledge. This feature has been a cause of disdain towards wearers of Google Glass, wherein a journalist was recently attacked in San Francisco. We should note that many tech companies patent hundreds--even thousands--of patents over time, but only a fraction of which are manufactured and even a handful of them would be shipped. Source: TechCrunch Read More

Google launches first Project Ara conference (0)

Google has formally announced its Project Ara, which aims to develop modular smartphones that consumers can assemble from individual parts, through a developer conference held Tuesday. In Google's ideal world, hardware modules like flat blocks for camera or blood-sugar monitor would be available in an "app store" of sorts, much like its own Google Play for software apps. These modules would be fitted into a metal phone endoskeleton, which the company calls Project Ara, and they are held together by magnets. Each module performs a particular task. One block works as the phone's antenna, another one would be the device's battery or camera or fitness monitor. Google would develop the design of the Project Ara endoskeleton, while third-party developers would design the modules. Google plans to offer entry-level modular phones, which contain the most basic of functions, that would cost about $50 to manufacture. The tech company is also developing an online marketplace that offer additional modules, so consumers can modify their phones with new functionalities from monitoring the user's heartbeat to lighting his cigarette. Source: The Wall Street Journal Read More

Google allows U.S. residents become Glass Explorers (0)

Google has yet to launch its Glass to general consumers, but it is taking a giant step towards mass production. The tech company opens the Glass Explorer program to everyone in the United States beginning April 15, as long as they can shell out $1,500 (plus taxes). Google will even ship them in their favorite shade or prescription frame. The program is only available to a limited number of spots, so it is best to buy them early beginning 6:00 a.m. PT on Tuesday (9:00 a.m. ET). For those living outside the United States, Google would glady take your $1,500, but it is "not ready to bring Glass to other countries" as of this posting. Expanding the Explorer pool apart from the first batch of beta testers (before sending invites to their friends and family) could halt the negative perception surrounsing Glass Explorers, who have received unflattering nicknames like "Glassholes." Source: TechCrunch Read More

Google reportedly updating Android camera app (0)

Google is reportedly working on a completely new, completely improved camera app for Android mobile devices. According to Engadget, the tech company will overhaul the UI, allowing users to selectively defocus the background on portrait shots, as well as improved Panorama and Photo Sphere features. The update will arrive through a standalone update to Android's camera app. It will also provide support for third-party filters, enabling developers to create customized effects that users can download for their own camera app. The alleged new features are said to resemble Nokia's Refocus app, as well as HTC's camera features for their One smartphone, which includes creating custom filters. Source: TechCrunch Read More

Google Glass to come with Ray-Ban and Oakley versions (0)

Google has announced it has forged a partnership with Luxottica, which markets Ray-Ban and Oakley eyewear, for more fashionable versions of Google Glass. The luxury company will collaborate with Google in incorporating the head-mounted device with its well-known brands. Using two high-end brands with completely different aesthetics shows that Google wants to make Google Glass accessible to a more general audience. Ray-Ban is an American classic that still adheres to its decades-old styles, while Oakley is known for its futuristic designs. The announcement comes after Google revealed a prescription-lens version of the wearable device, fueling speculations that the tech company plans on offering fashionable frames for Glass. Availability of these luxury editions of Google Glass is not yet finalized, although a statement on Glass' official blog suggests it may be sold in Luxottica's retail and wholesale distribution channels. As for the cost, the integration with Ray-Ban and Oakley would likely make the $1,500 gadget even more expensive. (That is, if Glass will ever be released in the market.) Source: Mashable Read More

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