An attendee wears Google Glass while watching the opening keynote at a Google I/O developers conference in San Francisco.
An attendee wears Google Glass while watching the opening keynote at a Google I/O developers conference in San Francisco. - 
Listen To The Story

Google announced that it will stop the production of Google Glass … but is this the end for the glasses or the beginning of something bigger? Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson shares his thoughts.

“This is the perfect example of how Google’s design and product philosophy can fail,” says Johnson. “The company had this kind of incredible idea of augmented reality where you could put data in front of you sort of while you’re going through life. And we’ve been imagining this since, what, the first Terminator movie?”

When Google Glass came out, it wasn’t a fully developed product. Google delivered the technology, tethered it to your phone and expected people to make stuff for it. It was controversial, expensive and raised concerns about privacy. “I think it was a misstep for the company," Johnson says, "I think they should have developed it in-house, as Apple would have done.

"I mean, think about Steve Jobs when he released the iPhone. That piece of hardware was so perfectly finished. It was ready for prime time and everybody who touched it became an evangelist," Johnson says. "Everybody who touched the Glass did not become an evangelist, and I think that was part of the problem for the company.”

Although production is stopping, Johnson believes the technology is here to stay and will transform as Tony Fadell from the home automation company Nest takes over Google Glass.


“I think the best compliment I can give is not to say how much your programs have taught me (a ton), but how much Marketplace has motivated me to go out and teach myself.” – Michael in Arlington, VA

As a nonprofit news organization, what matters to us is the same thing that matters to you: being a source for trustworthy, independent news that makes people smarter about business and the economy. So if Marketplace has helped you understand the economy better, make more informed financial decisions or just encouraged you to think differently, we’re asking you to give a little something back.

Become a Marketplace Investor today – in whatever amount is right for you – and keep public service journalism strong. We’re grateful for your support.

Follow David Gura at @davidgura