Amazon Glass? Online retail giant may be working on Alexa-powered eyewear

A not-so-blurry future

Many people in technology think the next big thing in techy gadgets will be glasses, as in AR glasses or some sort of “smart” glasses. If you’re having a Google Glass flashback, we understand, but the Financial Times is reporting that Amazon is currently working on a set of tech specs, with one key feature: Alexa integration. Because what’s better than yelling across the house at an Echo or talking into your phone? Just simply chatting up Alexa through a pair of glasses that are already on your head.

According to the Times, the glasses don’t have AR screens or other noticeable tech; but they will have bone conduction technology so you can semi-silently hear Alexa respond without having to use earbuds. The glasses will likely pair with your smartphone to function, much like a fitness band or smartwatch. And Amazon isn’t alone in their quest to put tech into eyewear.

Snapchat has already taken the plunge with the fun – but also possibly stylish – video-recording Spectacles, and Apple has long been rumored to be working on some smart specs, a project that may take on new urgency with the rollout of their new AR tech and the suddenly interested competition. Hit the link for more information, and get ready to add some smart shades to your teched-out wardrobe.

Send money, in a while

Apple’s iOS 11 update dropped yesterday, as we’re sure you iPhone and iPad owners are aware, but one important feature that didn’t arrive with the big overhaul is the direct peer-to-peer payment system in iMessage. That feature was prominently promoted by Apple earlier this year and was to be a highlight of update. But when it actually hit: it wasn’t there.

So what’s up? Apple likely held the feature back because it’s not quite ready, and will roll it out in a future update. Business Insider says that could hurt Apple in the direct payments game, which is dominated right now by services like PayPal, Venmo, Square and others, and is getting more popular all the time. With over a billion i-devices in the wild, Apple has a giant installed base of users to tap into, so the sooner it can get the expanded Apple Pay to work, the better.

More letters for the Alphabet

Looks like the Google/HTC deal is about to go down. According to multiple sources, HTC has halted trading on their stock as speculation builds that the search giant is about to absorb the phone maker, which is making some of Google’s upcoming Pixel 2 handsets. The two companies have been working together in some fashion for years, and reliable tech secrets leaker Evan Blass tweeted out that someone within HTC told him there’s a big company-wide meeting… set for tomorrow.

Blass added that according to his sources, Google and HTC have finalized a deal that would have Google take over some of HTC’s engineering assets, but HTC as a brand will continue on. Previous rumors around the deal speculated that while Google would take over parts of the company, the VR division that makes the popular Vive system is NOT part of the deal. But…. We’ll see.

Google seems to be pushing hard on getting its hardware design and creation done in-house, so scooping up either all or part of HTC seems like a smart move. We’ll likely know more very, very soon.

We’ve got more news on our Facebook page and YouTube channel, and be sure to tune in to this week’s DT podcasts: Close to the Metal (computers and such) on Tuesday, Trends with Benefits (general tech shenanigans)  on Thursdays, and Between the Streams (movie and TV topics) every Friday.

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