As Eric Schmidt promised, Google Glass is well on its way to making a comeback. Massimo Vian, the CEO of Italian eyewear company Luxottica, told shareholders in Milan in April that the company is working with Google to create the next version of Glass.
Google ended the Explorer Program earlier this year, saying in a blog post that the smart eyeglasses were “graduating from Google[x] labs.” After some initial fanfare, Google Glass was criticized for using the general public to test the unfinished product. Google even said in their blog post, “Glass was in its infancy, and you [those in the Explorer program] took those very first steps and taught us how to walk.” Since then, Glass has all but hidden away.
Now, it seems it may be returning to the public soon. Luxottica — which owns Lenscrafters and Sears, and manufactures glasses from Ray-Ban and Chanel — first partnered with Google in May 2014 to create frames for Glass. Now, it seems Luxottica will be more involved.
“In Google, there are some second thoughts on how to interpret version three [of the eyewear],” Vian said to shareholders. “What you saw was version one. We’re now working on version two, which is in preparation.” (It’s possible that Vian meant to say “version two” instead of “version three,” since version three doesn’t seem to be in place yet.)
While a spokeswoman from Google did not confirm the partnership or any specifics about the new Glass (“the team is heads down building the future of the product,” she said), we do know that Luxottica is bound to bring some design expertise to the table. Judging from what people thought of the first version, Google might need it.