Google Glass Needs To Be Way Cheaper, Says Google X Boss

Google Glass had a lot of enthusiastic adopters when it launched in 2012, but recent reports suggest early fans are starting to ditch the product. For example, nine out of 16 Google Glass app makerscontacted by Reuters saidthat they had abandoned the product “because of the lack of customers or limitations of the device.”

One reason for Google Glass’s slow adoption is its high price tag. A pair of Google Glass costs $US1,500 today, which even by tech gadgets’ standards is quite high.

Astro Teller, head of Google X labs, which led the development of Google Glass, also acknowledged it in a recent interview with CNET.

Although Teller didn’t mention a specific timeline or a target for dropping the price, he said price cuts for high end products, like Google Glass, could make a big difference in market penetration, unlike cheap wearables in the $US30 to $US40 range. “But for a $US200 watch, or Glass, or anything in between, I think it’s sort of fair,” he said.

He added, “Every time you drop the price by a factor of 2, you roughly get a 10 times pick up of the number of people who will seriously consider buying it.” In other words, for Google Glass to become a mainstream product, it needs to cut its price in half twice, which would bring down its price to a more reasonable $US375.

In the interview, Teller also said Google Glass has become a “poster child” for some of the privacy issues around wearable devices, and it’s something that needs to be discussed. He also said Google Glass is focused on becoming a “smart eyewear,” rather than a computer-like device that does everything on its own.

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