Even though Google Glass wasn’t the resounding success the company hoped it would be, Google hasn’t given up on the wearable technology. According to reports from The Information, the team behind the revamped project, now called Project Aura, is currently working on three versions of the device - at least one of which that relies only on audio - but this could be consolidated into two.
The source claims that one version of the device will have a screen and be targeted at enterprises while the other two will be audio-only, one of which will be aimed at ‘Sports users.’ Like the original Google glass, they will use bone conduction, which passes sound through the bones of the inner ear but without blocking external noises. The Information describes them as “Headphones worn on your face.”
The project is overseen by Nest co-founder and chief executive Tony Fadell, who once experimented with head-mounted designs at Apple. The team also includes audio experts that Google hired after Amazon.com laid off a number of engineers from its Lab126 hardware division in August.
There have been several reasons put forward as to why Google glass wasn’t a commercial success: it was highly conspicuous on a user’s face, the fact that the camera had such potential for misuse, and because it wasn’t clear to consumers why they would need one in the first place. It did, however, prove more popular with enterprise customers, which could explain why Google has reportedly redesigned the consumer version and removed the screen yet kept the feature on the business model.