Google+ chief leaving Google

|By:, SA News Editor

Nine days after launching a one-day Google Glass promotion for the general public, Google (GOOG -0.4%) has once more made its display glasses available to all, albeit without announcing the move. Glass microdisplay supplier Himax (HIMX -2%) must be pleased.

The Explorer Edition of Glass still costs a steep $1,500. Glass' full commercial launch - no ETA has been given, but an FT report suggested it'll happen in 2H14 - will almost certainly involve a much lower price tag. Public attitudes towards Glass still remain very mixed, but businesses and institutions are dreaming up plenty of use cases.

Meanwhile, Google+ chief Vic Gundotra has announced he's leaving following an 8-year stint at Google. Gundotra spearheaded the integration of Google+ - now has 300M+ MAUs, but engagement is still light - with a vast array of Google services, thereby turning it into an identity layer for the company's Web empire (and sometimes triggering backlashes).

A Quora question about how Gundotra is perceived at Google yielded a positive response from an ex-engineering director - "Vic is a great communicator." - and a less charitable anonymous response. "Internally, the Google culture is very open with people speaking their mind honestly. In contrast to that, Vic comes across as a used car salesman."

Update: Google has denied reports stating Glass is publicly available. The company attributes the misunderstanding to a failure to edit an order page for the April 15 sale.