Google Glass contest gives non-devs a chance to grab $1,500 specs

Google Glass contest gives non-devs a chance to grab $1,500 specs

Summary: Google has revealed that non-developers will be able to get their hands on a prototype of the upcoming Google Glass device if they can sell their vision of what they'd use it for in 50 words or less.


Google has launched a new 'competition' that will let non-developers get their hands on the company's internet-enabled glasses, Google Glass

Google Glasses

Announced at Google's I/O conference last year, the prototype 'Explorer Edition' of the networked specs was only made available to developers. The competition, launched on Wednesday, will be the first time that those outside of the developer community will be able to access the devices, with 8,000 of them up for grabs.

In order to enter, Google is asking people to say on Twitter and Google+ how they would use the glasses if they were given a set.

Google is asking entrants to tag their ideas, which must be no longer than 50 words, with the hashtag #ifIhadglass. Entrants are also allowed to use up to five photos and a video up to 15 seconds in length. 

See: Take a peek through Google glasses

Applications must be made before 27 February and Google will award the glasses to the lucky competition winners at a pick-up experience in New York, San Francisco or Los Angeles. 

The competition is open anyone over the age of 18 living in the US and will give them the opportunity to try out the glasses before they go on general sale. While Google hasn't set a date when that will be, it's thought Google Glass could reach general availability at the end of 2014.

However, there's no such thing as a free lunch for would-be Glass owners: competition winners will still need to spend $1,500 to get their Explorer Edition of the glasses.

To coincide with the competition launch, Google released a new YouTube video demonstrating the headset's initial features, user interface and the overall experience of using the device. 

The video shows Google Glass in action and suggests that users will be able to take photos and record what they see by giving voice commands like "OK Glass, take a picture" or "OK Glass, record a video". The video also shows features such as voice-controlled searches and Google+ Hangouts.  

Topics: Google, Emerging Tech

Sam Shead

About Sam Shead

Sam is generally at his happiest with a new piece of technology in his hands or nailing down an exclusive story. In the past he's written for The Engineer and the Daily Mail. These days, Sam is particularly interested in emerging technology, datacentres, cloud, storage and web start-ups.

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  • Ok Glass, Shut Down Google the evil.

    • All your privacy are belong to us

      ... and CIA / NSA.
  • A touch too much connectivity for me

    I wear glasses because I'm nearsighted and can't stand the thought of wearing contact lenses (I've seen too many other people have problems with the latter). Wearing "glasses", no matter how stylish, for the sole purpose of spending all of one's waking hours connected to the Internet, just strikes me as a symptom of misplaced priorities (some additional time interacting with one's immediate surroundings is probably in order).
    John L. Ries
  • Won't wear them

    Sorry I won't walk around in public looking like a Borg. Just so I can walk in front of a bus or train and die reading my Facebook page. I do not want that much connectivity.
    • "Just so I can walk in front of a bus or train and die..."

      Hey...nothing wrong with Darwinism! The better to purify the Gene Pool I say.

      Have no interest in all this crap either, but the more idiots who are culled using this stuff the better.
      • It would be better if there were fewer psychopaths running loose

        (And reproducing)
        But that's probably a matter of better policing.
        John L. Ries
        • ...and...

          ...non-psychos having better observation skills.
          John L. Ries
    • @jscott418

      This could bring a new "augmented reality" to that old phrase "Blue screen of death"
  • They Live!

    The first two applications that come to mind are the movie "They Live!" and the old comic book sponsor, X-Ray Specs. They Live! suggests something akin to infra-red display specs. Using infra-red aka night vision a lot of interesting objects have been filmed flying around the night sky and otherwise. I suspect there are very interesting hidden layers to our daily world. I would like GoogleGlass to play a role in the de-occultation of that stuff.
  • A nice tool in a trashed world.

    Human induced degradation out there on all fronts and across the globe-lets put some cool glasses on. Put them on and look through them and see crisis, put them on and google the news and read about the crisis. Put them on in L.A. and see shootings and out of them and kids falling on skateboards in them, put them on in N.Y. and see moral decay out of them and drunk pranks in them, Put them on in Beijing and see pollution out of them, your sisters party highlights inside of them. Do they protect you from nuclear bombs or engineered viruses? Great glasses in a horrible world.
    Paul McGinnis
  • Right. Because we need to be connected to Google and the internet

    all our waking moments.
    William Farrel
    • I'm so looking forward

      To seeing ads in my field of view.
      • Like a Maaco Autobody ad

        right before the accident.
        William Farrel
  • Not even 50 characters

    "Watch porn on the subway"

    Now gimme my free glasses.
    • Unfortunately... *is* likely to be used that way. But since input directly affects output (ie. behavior), porno addicts will be easier to spot and avoid.
      John L. Ries
  • No Free Lunch

    So even if you are chosen, you still have to drop $1500 to get them. Sounds like the most effed up contest I have ever heard of...
    Craig Stitzlein
    • Nevermind

      This is an affront to everything Al Gore had in mind when he invented the internet and ushered in the era of free porn for all. I guess I have to defer to the one true use of the iPad after all (consuming porn on the subway ;) )
  • Ok Glass record a video...

    As we cause a f-ing accident on the freeway.
  • Thoughts

    Guarantee it will be made illegal to use them while driving anything.
    How about those who already wear glasses [for REAL purposes]?
    Guarantee there will be privacy issues. I can see Google using videos you record becoming part of Google Maps and related stuff. Now they can film the interiors of your place and put them on the Internet!
    Probably powered by Chrome OS - guaranteed to need updates every couple of weeks!
  • The Future

    I think this is great. Google Glass is a huge advancement when it comes to touchless displays. Its the future really. although I would like to see some of this tech on the nano scale. Like the glasses but in contacts.