I’m definitely tempted, that’s for sure.
Smart homes, smartphones, smartwatches… it should be no surprise that smart glasses have now made their own introduction. I was reading up about this new startup company called North, which has created a pair of glasses with a holographic display embedded in the lens. With this new smart feature, you can read text messages, follow directions, see reminders and calendar entries, and even see the weather.
So, does that sound useful or really annoying and distracting? I suppose it’s a bit of both. They function as real glasses that are tailor-made to each user, so they aren’t a gadget or toy as such. Plus, there doesn’t appear to be any recording feature, which was the major issue facing the worldwide dislike of the ill-fated Google Glass and even those pesky Snapchat Spectacles. The designs look like frames you’d find from any modern eyewear seller, and if they expanded their range to look a bit more like these cat eye prescription glasses, then I’d be a happy bunny.
It seems as if the glasses from North will only be available in Brooklyn or Toronto right now, but we’ll see if the idea takes off there first. I feel like I already look at my phone too much, which takes me out of the real world and into some sort of addictive virtual one, so the thought that there’s yet another item which pings me with a notification is a bit unnerving. Also, the price of $1,000 USD is way too much for the average person who might use the features every now and then. I wonder if it would make my eyes even more tired and red at the end of the day, which is something I occasionally struggle with.
I certainly wouldn’t be someone to line up for one of these pairs from North, but nor would I turn my nose up at someone asking me to try them out for a few days. In a way, they simply feel like a lot of fancy technology does these days, such as the Apple Watch or Amazon Echo: somewhat useful and cool but nowhere even close to being an essential part of your life. True, we might have said the same thing about TVs or smartphones once upon a time, but these glasses are decades away from being part of everyday life, in my opinion.