Tony Fadell, one of many fathers of the iPod and founder of Nest, was put in charge of the Glass project when the company stopped selling the “Explorer Edition” of the device in January earlier this year. While it was assumed that this would mean that Google was giving the project a restart (and, in fact, Google confirmed this to be the case during its Q4 earnings call), Tony Fadell has recently came out publicly to reiterate this point…
“We’ve decided to go and look at every detail, have no sacred cows and figure out the way forward,” Fadell said at the Google Zeitgeist conference near London, according to a report from the Financial Times. “I have a really engaged team, they’re really excited about the future and expect more things to come soon.”
Fadell is clearly leaving no stones unturned and, rightfully, wants to approach the device from a new perspective. He’s adopted much of the ideology of his previous employer, Apple, and says that no more public testing of the head-mounted display — as happened with the Explorer Edition — is planned to happen. According to an advisor to Fadell, the Nest CEO won’t be releasing the next version of Glass until it’s “perfect.”
And while it’s not exactly a surprising bit of information, Fadell also reportedly confirmed that the company has no plans to launch the next version of Glass under the Nest brand. “The only thing in common between the two is me,” he said.
We covered in much detail the state of Glass back when the device began its transition period, but Google and Fadell have spent the last several months re-forming the team. In early March, for example, Google posted several job listings looking for engineers for the project. Most recently, luxury eyewear maker Luxottica confirmed that they’re working with Google on the next version of Glass, and that the next version should be coming “soon.”
Many patents have surfaced over the last several months, undeniably showing Glass-like devices. Some patents even show a device that can be controlled via eye-tracking, technology that Google is almost certainly dabbling in. We’re likely to hear more about the next Glass at some point this year, as Google itself has said, but until then all we have are little tidbits of information suggesting that at least one prototype out in the wild has a design that’s a lot more fashionable.
Meanwhile, some of Fadell’s former colleagues at Apple just released the Apple Watch. Despite being a competitor to Fadell’s project in at least one sense (given that the devices have a very different approach to wearable computing), Fadell says that he’s going to give it a shot and see how it fits his life… when the device he ordered actually ships.
“The jury’s out for me,” he said. “I’m going to see how it fits into my life and give it a try.”
There’s no word yet on whether or not Google will be mentioning Glass at its annual Google I/O developers’ conference at the end of the month, but the schedule for this year’s event is notably absent of any sessions related to the wearable computer. We’ll be on the ground at the event, and we’ll keep you updated on Glass-related news and otherwise.