This company thinks it can fix Google Glass’ problems

Google Glass isn’t a perfect product, hardly surprising given that it’s still officially in its beta stage, but this company thinks it can come up with something better, and solve some of the problems long-term Glass users have been highlighting. The firm is Mota, which recently hit the headlines with its SmartRing, and we got a chance to see an early prototype version of its SmartGlass, which it thinks can challenge Google famous specs.

Seeing them up close, Mota’s SmartGlass make an instant impression, because they look like big, lens-less sunglasses. Resplendent in sporty white and red, they have a uniform, more symmetrical design than Google’s smart glasses, and there’s a good reason for that according to Mota co-founder Kevin Faro. He told us by splitting the battery in two, and equally distributing it in both arms, heat generation is minimized.

Mota SmartGlass Prototype Design 1Anyone who has spent time with Google Glass on their face knows it can get pretty hot, so this is a key alteration. Although details on how it would be achieved were slim, Mota also expects to cut the power consumption in half, extending the battery’s usage time beyond that of Google’s efforts. There is a compromise here, in that the early Mota SmartGlass won’t run Android, but a custom Java-based operating system with an open software development kit available for developers. One benefit will be compatibility with both Android and iOS, so both operating systems will get access to all the features. In the future though, there is a chance Android Wear will be installed on the Mota SmartGlass.

Swappable frames, and a low price

If you’re not keen on the design seen here, then don’t worry, it’s not final, and could change before SmartGlass is official. It will also be joined by other options. Mota wants to offer a selection of different frames for SmartGlass, all of which would change its appearance entirely, so they could be altered to fit in with specific environments, like the office or the gym. An often repeated argument against wearing Glass is its overt geekiness, and making SmartGlass more visually appealing and appropriate for a wide range of situations, could be a winning move.

Related: What it’s like to buy Google Glass, in a Glass store

Mota SmartGlass Prototype 2The Mota SmartGlass is still in the developmental stages, and the final specifications haven’t been decided upon. Faro wouldn’t go into specifics, so as to avoid any disappointment when the launch comes around. He did say the feature list would be comparable to Google Glass, and was proud to show the main internal component and circuit board was ready to go. A stills and video camera is certain, and a series of gesture controls are also being worked on. Faro demonstrated how the camera would “see” these gestures and act accordingly. For example, making a “frame” with your fingers and thumbs would snap a picture.

It sounds great, and Faro was confident SmartGlass will be ready for launch in the next six months or so. It’ll most likely start out as a crowd-funding project, just like the SmartRing, and we’re told the approximate price will be $400, less than a third of the current price of Google Glass. We’ll find out in 2015 if Mota’s ambitious plan becomes reality.

Product Review

Samsung's Galaxy S10 phones are its most refined yet. Be prepared to pay up

Samsung has unveiled its lineup for its most popular smartphones, and it includes the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus. The two flagship phones boast hole-punch cameras, fingerprint sensors embedded in the display, and beefier batteries.
Mobile

Samsung Galaxy S10e vs. iPhone XR: Cut-price flagship showdown

The Samsung Galaxy S10 range has been revealed, and it heralds a new age of powerful technology. The Galaxy S10e packs the new power and design into a cheaper price point. But is it better than the iPhone XR?
Cars

Consumer Reports bumps the Tesla Model 3 off of its list of recommended models

The Tesla Model 3 is one of the six new cars that have lost their coveted Recommended rating from Consumer Reports over reliability concerns. In 2018, Model 3 owners reported body trim falling off and problems with the car's glass.
Mobile

Protect and style your Samsung Galaxy S10 with the best cases and covers

If you've splashed the cash for a shiny new Samsung Galaxy S10, then you'll want to take steps to protect your investment. With a metal frame and glass curves, the S10 needs some cover. Check out the best Samsung Galaxy S10 cases.
Mobile

Samsung Galaxy S10 vs. Google Pixel 3: Can Samsung beat the stock Android king?

The Samsung Galaxy S10 is here, offering modern specs, a beautifully high-resolution display, and an edge-to-edge design with a small cutout in the display for the front-facing camera. But can the phone take out the Google Pixel 3?
Deals

Protect your iPhone or iPad with the IPVanish VPN, on sale through February

One of our favorite virtual private networks for iPhones and iPads, IPVanish, is now offering a huge discount on its two-year subscription as part of its 7th-birthday promotion. Read on to find out more about how this VPN works and how you…
Mobile

Samsung’s wide range of Galaxy products means there’s something for everyone

Samsung launched a host of new products on February 20, with prices ranging from just $35, all the way up to nearly $2,000. This was not by chance, and the company believes it has something for everyone in 2019.
Mobile

Verizon is launching real standards-based 5G in 30 cities in 2019

Verizon is in the midst of a massive 5G rollout. In addition to fixed 5G service, it will also begin deploying mobile 5G in the coming months. Here's everything you need to know about Verizon's 5G network and when it will be in your town.
Deals

Stay fit and save cash with our top 10 affordable Fitbit alternatives

As much as we love Fitbits, they're rather expensive. If all you want is a simple activity tracker, however, then check out these great cheap Fitbit alternatives. With offerings from brands like Garmin, you don't need to pay full price.
Mobile

Samsung Galaxy S10e vs. OnePlus 6T: Can the Flagship Killer survive?

The Samsung Galaxy S10e is the new affordable flagship on the block, but at $750, it's $200 more than the OnePlus 6T. Does the Flagship Killer stand a chance against the new generation of flagship devices? Let's take a closer look.
Deals

Make some time for the best smartwatch deals for February 2019

Smartwatches make your life easier by sending alerts right on your wrist. Many also provide fitness-tracking features. So if you're ready to take the plunge into wearables and want to save money, read on for the best smartwatch deals.
Product Review

Samsung’s Galaxy Buds are a brilliant combination of value and comfort

With six hours of battery life, an extremely comfortable fit, sweatproofing, and a very palatable price tag, Samsung’s Galaxy Buds are putting all other true wireless earbuds on notice.
Deals

Amazon drops a sweet deal on the Kate Spade Scallop smartwatch for women

Unlike many other smartwatches geared toward women, the Kate Spade Scallop offers a more chic and minimalistic look. With this Amazon sale going on right now, you can get it for $109 off its retail price.
Cars

Lyft’s Shared Saver service offers cheaper rides, but you’ll have to walk a little

Lyft has launched a new ride option called Shared Saver that offers cheaper rides if you're willing to walk a little. Shared Saver designates a nearby pick-up point and drops you off a short distance from your final destination.