Posted by James on March 02, 2015
When the initial Google Glass project was shelved in January 2015, it had many people wondering if so-called “wearable technology”, including smart sunglasses, had a future as mass-market products.
Well, new research has confirmed what many of us believed. Yes, there is certainly a bright future for the technology. However, it’s not going to become mainstream, until the products become more like fashion accessories and less like gadgets.
In a new white-paper from Juniper Research, entitled: “The World in 2020 A Technology Vision”, they predict that the wearable technology marketplace will be worth $80 billion by 2020. Smart sunglasses could have a valuable slice of this market, if designers and developers focus more on style.
Initial attempts at creating smart sunglasses were met with great excitement amongst the tech media and geek community. However, this excitement failed to be repeated with consumers. It seems that the very thing that the technology geeks loved about smart sunglasses, that they looked so high-tech, seems to have been the primary barrier.
The past few years has seen growing consumer demand for smart watches. Unlike the initial smart sunglasses, which looked very different from regular sunglasses, smart watches look pretty similar to fashion watches. The success of smart watches proves that there’s clearly a demand for the technology behind wearable devices, so long as they look more like a fashion accessory and less like a gadget.
It's little wonder then, that Google has started development on their new version of Google Glass, working alongside fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, as well as sunglasses giants Luxottica.
I have no doubt whatsoever, that as the technology becomes smaller, it will be possible to have smart sunglasses that look identical to premium, fashion sunglasses.
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