Google Gets Physical
Working in the SEM industry, it's easy to think of Google as a company that only provides online products and services - be it Search, Gmail, Maps, YouTube, Google+ or the Android OS. A company that only makes software - intangible stuff that disappears once the off button has been pressed on your pc/laptop/tablet/smart
Of course, Google has dipped it's rather large toe into the world of hardware before. The Nexus One was Google's flagship smartphone (manufactured by HTC) which became available in January 2010 using Android. Google next co-developed smartphones with Samsung, namely the Nexus S in December 2010 and the Galaxy Nexus in November 2011.
However, it seems that very recently Google has set its sight on developing some truly advanced, cutting-edge tech that may impact our lives in the real world as much as it has online!
Firstly, there's the incredibly well received Nexus 7 (view the Engadget review here) which is a 7-inch tablet running the latest version of Android, co-developed by Asus. It will primarily compete with similar devices such as the Kindle Fire and the much-rumoured-to-be-released-this-October/November Apple iPad Mini. The Nexus 7 was released in July and you can buy one today!
Then there's the Nexus Q, (planned for release in the US in June this year, this has subsequently been delayed), which is a media-streaming entertainment device which integrates with Google Play.
If those gadgets weren't enough, Google has also pioneered the development of technology for driverless cars with its “Google Driverless Car” project. In August this year Google announced they have completed over 300,000 autonomous driving miles accident free!
World domination plans continue with the “Google Fiber project”. This aims to build a network infrastructure, using fiber optics, delivering internet connection speeds up to 100 times faster than is available today. This has recently been unveiled in Kansas City, US.
Hopefully, I have saved the best for last! It seems that an affordable augmented reality headset will be available to buy in the not too distant future. Google's R&D program “Project Glass” has developed an augmented reality head mounted display which takes the form of a pair of internet-connected spectacles. Information is displayed above your right eye through a small transparent screen which can also record and stream video. Due for release before the end of 2014 for consumers, it can be purchased today if you are a specialised developer based in the US. Check out Google's short introductory video showing the potential of “Project Glass” below:
Is it possible that in a few years time we will see Google branded stores in our town centres competing with Apple?
What Google products are you most excited about and do you think they are neglecting their role as a search engine in favour of these technologies?