- Google (GOOG +0.7%) has begun offering the first version of Google Glass (provided earlier this year to a limited number of developers/enthusiasts) to certain subscribers of its All Access music subscription service. But for now, the display glasses are still priced at a steep $1,500.
- Glass' full commercial launch is expected in early 2014, and will likely be accompanied by a price cut. Ahead of the launch, Google has been busy creating a developer ecosystem, and plenty of businesses have been coming up with use cases. At the same time, concerns about privacy (stemming from Glass' built-in camera) and social discomfort haven't gone away.
- Wired's Mat Honan has provided a mixed review of Glass after using it for a year. He notes the product created a lot of social tension - "Again and again, I made people very uncomfortable. That made me very uncomfortable." - and refrained from wearing it in many public settings.
- At the same time, Honan is a big fan of Glass' Google Now integration - "[Now's] ambient location awareness, combined with previous Google searches, means extremely relevant notifications come to your attention in a way they just can’t on a smartphone." - and states Glass made him "hate" using his phone due to the social withdrawal it produces.
- Honan: "Glass, and the other things like it, won’t always be ugly and awkward ... The future is on its way, and it is going to be on your face."
- Glass microdisplay supplier Himax (HIMX +4.7%) is rallying for the second day in a row. Shares have made new highs, and are closing out the year up 519%.