SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) -Google said on Thursday it is halting sales of its Internet-linked eyewear Glass but insisted the technology would live on in a future consumer product.
The technology titan is putting brakes on an “explorer” program that let people interested in dabbling with Glass buy eyewear for $1,500 apiece.
“Glass was in its infancy, and you took those very first steps and taught us how to walk,” the team said of its “explorer” clients in a post on the Google+ social network.
“Well, we still have some work to do, but now we’re ready to put on our big kid shoes and learn how to run.”
The last day to buy Glass as part of the Explorer program will be Monday and Google did not indicate when a general consumer version of the eyewear might debut.
“Google Glass hasn’t truly been released as a product yet – it’s been in long-term beta for over two years,” said Forrester analyst J.P. Gownder.
“This organisational move will help to clarify the go to market strategy for both consumer and for enterprise customers.”
Glass – hotly anticipated by some, mocked by others – became available in the United States in early last year to anyone with $1,500 to spare and a desire to become an “explorer.”
The Glass test, or beta, program was later expanded to Britain.
During the Explorer testing phase, developers are creating apps for Google Glass, which can range from getting weather reports to sharing videos to playing games.
Glass connects to the Internet using Wi-Fi hot spots or, more typically, by being wirelessly tethered to mobile phones. Pictures or video may be shared through the Google+ social network.