Google has broadened its Glass invitations to a new group, paid subscribers to Google Play Music All Access, though they’ll still have to stump up the not-inconsiderable $1,500-plus-tax sticker price on the beta wearable. The invitations, which are being emailed to All Access subscribers, bills the deal as being to mark the addition of Play Music streaming support to Glass earlier this month.
The opportunity to buy Glass – even in what Google still concedes is pre-consumer form – marks a further expansion of the company’s experiment refining the wearable computer. The final product, or at least generation one of the consumer model, is unofficially tipped to debut sometime in 2014, but Google has been refining the system with monthly firmware updates as it listens to “Glass Explorer” feedback.
That feedback has increased considerably in recent months. Back in November, Google invited a fresh batch of developers to join in, while before that existing users were given three invite codes to share with others.
Meanwhile, a more general Glass wait-list opened in November for those who don’t know someone with an invitation to spare. That may not be too many, however, at least in the US where Glass is still officially only available; many existing Explorers have turned to Google+ and other services to offer up invites, as their friends, family, and colleagues have not taken them up on the offer.
Exactly how many Glass units are in the wild is unclear; the previous estimate was around 10,000, but that could have increased as more people stump up $1,500 to join the club.
As ever, those Google Play Music All Access subscribers – who pay $9.99 a month for the streaming service – will have to be US-based in order to buy Glass. Google will either ship the headset to a US address, or new owners can pick it up from a Glass center in San Francisco, Los Angeles, or New York.