Glass may not have been the wearable revolution Google hoped, but the latest rumors suggest the reborn Project Aura is now working on a trio of successors. The team, which rebranded earlier this year and reportedly busied itself working on an enterprise wearable for users less swayed by fashion and more by functionality, is now said to have both consumers and businesses in mind.
According to sources speaking to The Information, for a while there have been three wearables on the Project Aura roadmap. One is the enterprise version we heard about before, complete with a display, but the others are said to have dropped that contentious feature.
In fact, the other two wearables – one of which is believed to be a “sport” model for the active – focus on audio for interactions instead. Relying on bone conduction, which passes sound through the bones of the inner ear but without blocking external noises, they’re described as “headphones worn on your face” by The Information.
It’s possible, the sources say, that two of the models could have been combined into a single device.
Among the team’s members are former Amazon experts on audio, it’s said, with Tony Fadell still leading the project.
A whispering virtual assistant isn’t an entirely new idea, it’s worth noting. Motorola tried something similar with the Moto Hint, a discreet Bluetooth headset that could respond to instructions to send and read messages, get directions, and perform web searches.
The results of those tasks were read out to the wearer, with the goal being an entirely screen-free process.
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That would allow Project Aura to move away from one of Google Glass’ most obvious drawbacks, the fact that it was so obvious on the user’s face.
Despite initial enthusiasm about the wearable – stoked, undoubtedly, by an over-promising initial concept video that promised an augmented reality world far beyond what Glass ever accomplished – public sentiment quickly fixed on the camera and its potential for misuse.
SOURCE The Information