Keep a look out for Google’s AR glasses next time you’re out for a stroll.
This past January, reports began circulating that Google was in the development of its own augmented reality (AR) glasses that enable wearers to blend virtual graphics with the real world. During its I/O event in May, the company offered us our first real look at the device, teasing real-time language translation.
Earlier today, Google announced plans to begin testing its much-talked-about AR prototypes in select parts of the United States beginning next month, according to a new update from the company.
“Augmented reality (AR) is opening up new ways to interact with the world around us. It can help us quickly and easily access the information we need — like understanding another language or knowing how best to get from point A to point B,” said the company in a blog post. “For example, we recently shared an early AR prototype we’ve been testing in our labs that puts real-time translation and transcription directly in your line of sight.”
“However, testing only in a lab environment has its limitations. So starting next month, we plan to test AR prototypes in the real world.”
According to Google, real-world testing will allow them to better understand how these AR prototypes can be most effective in our day-to-day lives. The company will begin with a few dozen testers composed of Google employees and “select trusted testers.” These testers will have “strict limitations” on what they are able to do and where they will be able to go.
While these AR prototypes do feature “visual and audio sensors,” they are not capable of photography and videography. Image data captured by the glasses will be used for purposes such as navigation and translation, such as guiding operators to a specific destination or translating food menus.
Once the experience has been completed, Google says that the image data will be deleted within 30 days, minus any information needed for analysis and debugging. Bystanders can tell if image data is being collected via an LED indicator located on the device and can request that the data be deleted by the tester.
“It’s early, and we want to get this right, so we’re taking it slow, with a strong focus on ensuring the privacy of the testers and those around them,” added the company. “You can read more details about our limited public testing efforts for AR prototypes in the Google Help Center. As we continue to explore and learn what’s possible with AR, we look forward to sharing more updates.
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Image Credit: Google