Google has finally revealed the guts of Google Glass, and also that every sensible, intelligent policy must be balanced with an insane one. Like, for example, Google telling developers ads are verboten, while also telling users that if your friend wants to try them out for a week and Google finds out, it might decide to brick your $1500 toy.
First, the good news (for consumers), something Google doesn’t sugarcoat for developers:
No Ads. You may not serve or include any advertisements in your API Client.
Data Usage. You may not use user data from your API Client for advertising purposes. You may not sell or transmit any user data received from your API Client(s) to a third-party ad network or service, data broker, or other advertising or marketing provider. For the avoidance of doubt, user data from the API Client(s) may not be used for Third-Party Ad Serving (“3PAS”).
Not that there’s really much data to collect from the glasses per se; it doesn’t have a GPS unit built into it, although there is WiFi and Bluetooth.
Actually, if we’re being honest, Google Glasses are kind of crappy on the video front; they only go up to 720p video recording, although the five mega-pixel images might actually look a lot better than your typical cell phone camera (precisely why is a boring and arcane technical explanation that you can find here).
They also say the in-eye image looks like a 25″ TV screen about eight feet away. Also, it uses bone conduction to communicate audio, which is actually a nice touch as it means you won’t hear what the Glass user is listening to.
Finally, loan them to a buddy and Google will brick them:
If you resell, loan, transfer, or give your device to any other person without Google’s authorization, Google reserves the right to deactivate the Device, and neither you nor the unauthorized person using the Device will be entitled to any refund, product support, or product warranty.
That’s because Glass bonds with your specific brainwaves and begins reporting them back to Google.
OK, we might have made that last part up.
But hey, no ads!