Google Glass 2 might not be a pair of smartglasses after all, as the Google Glass team works on other wearable projects. Here's what we know - and what we think we know - about the Google Glass 2 UK release date, price and specifications.
Google Glass 2 UK release date: When is Google Glass 2 coming out?
Google Glass 2 is no longer just a rumour. Despite Google's confirmation on 16 January that the Explorer programme was closing and the original Google Glass was being taken off sale on 19 January, the company also confirmed that this is not the end for Google Glass.
In a Google+ post it wrote: "Since we first met, interest in wearables has exploded and today it’s one of the most exciting areas in technology. Glass at Work has been growing and we’re seeing incredible developments with Glass in the workplace. As we look to the road ahead, we realize that we’ve outgrown the lab and so we’re officially “graduating” from Google[x] to be our own team here at Google. We’re thrilled to be moving even more from concept to reality.
"As part of this transition, we’re closing the Explorer Program so we can focus on what’s coming next. January 19 will be the last day to get the Glass Explorer Edition. In the meantime, we’re continuing to build for the future, and you’ll start to see future versions of Glass when they’re ready. (For now, no peeking.)"
According to The Wall Street Journal, which broke the news about Google Glass 2, the next generation of the wearable gadget will arrive in 2015.
We had thought that Google Glass 2 would be unveiled at Google's I/O conference on 28 May, but the event came and went with no mention of the device. It was a bit of a disappointment, because it was at Google I/O 2012 where a team of skydivers streamed their journey from a plane to the Moscone Center in San Francisco using Glass. Google made the Explorer Edition available to I/O developers for $1500. There was no mention of Glass at I/O 2014, but this year's developer event seemed like the perfect time for Google to reveal Glass 2.
Now in November, 2016 is looking like a more likely release date for Google Glass 2. Between January and May, Google posted more than 20 job listings specifically for the Glass division.
Most recently, it has appointed consumer electronics experts from Amazon's Lab126 project for a second shot at smart eyewear, under the working title Project Aura. With Nest CEO Tony Fadell and Ivy Ross onboard, Project Aura will attempt to give Google Glass a commercial future.
Google Glass 2 UK price rumours: How much will Google Glass 2 cost?
Despite no murmurs on the price, Google Glass 2 was previously thought to be more affordable than the original £1000 Explorer Edition. That may be the case, although the new Enterprise Edition may prove tricky for customers to get hold of, expected to be available exclusively to Google's Glass for Work partners.
Google Glass 2: Specifications and features
Google will reportedly ditch Texas Instruments in favour of Intel as a chip provider. This should improve the battery life of Google Glass which has been a problem so far.
The WSJ says: "it isn't clear what Intel chip Google will use in the new version of Glass, but there will be an emphasis on power conservation".
Not only does Intel make decent chips, it may be a good deal for Google in terms of promotion. Intel will likely go full steam ahead when it backs something, like it has done with Ultrabooks.
More recently, the WSJ has reported that there will be an all-new button-and-hinge design that allows Google Glass 2 to snap on to other glasses. It's aimed at business- rather than home users.
9to5Mac has also reported on the new design for Google Glass 2, suggesting that the Enterprise Edition is "foldable, more water-resistant and rugged for the workplace". It also claims there will be longer battery life, improved performance and a larger prism for a fuller viewing experience of the Glass interface.
Another source said that less than five percent of the 300 Google employees working on Glass focus on the company's Glass at Work programme. However, the Intel push to industry will not change Google's bias towards the consumer market.
Intel is winning more and more partnerships in the mobile space with many recent smartphones and tablets coming with Atom processors. It has been working with Google on projects such as self-driving cars and the Nexus Player.
Update 18 November 2015: News has emerged that the Google Glass team has been working on a wearable that is not a pair of smartglasses. The report from The Information says the team behind Project Aura is working on one wearable with glass, and at least one without.
"One version, targeted at enterprises, has a screen. The others, one of which is targeted at "sport" users, doesn't and relies on audio. They use bone conduction, like the original Google Glass," reports the site.