Saturday, December 21, 2013

Wearable Computers: Where is Google Going with Glass and How Will Apple Compete?

Google Glass wearable computer detail
Google Glass wearable computer detail-via Wikimedia, CCA 3.0
Wearable computers are the next step in making computer use convenient for consumers. Many people nowadays want to have access to information while they are on the move. Smart watches and other wearable computers, such as Google Glass, make that possible.

Google Glass has a head mounted optical display. The company hopes to make a global impact with this device. The stylish product’s design should appeal to customers worldwide who want to have access to their data. This computer reminds me of the glasses or VISOR worn by Geordi La Forge on Star Trek, before he got his ocular implants. Will ocular implants be the next step, or next generation products, for industry players like Google and Apple?

Google and Apple often compete with their product offerings. Consumers have benefitted from this healthy competition with the development of innovative devices that meet their needs better than before. Major players in the information technology industry are pushed to go big every time they release a new device on the market. Instead of simply trudging along, technological innovations are moving at a rapid pace and knowledge and access to information is increasing quickly (Dan 12:4).

Companies that make a profit by putting out IT based products must ensure that they stay ahead of the game. It stands to reason that if Apple or any other company wants to take the lead with wearable computers, they have to develop something even better than Google has currently.

Apple and Google are both set to offer smart watch products. Google’s Smart Watch is paired with Google Now, a personal assistant that makes the device a valuable tool. Dick Tracy fans can now rejoice, after waiting decades to see something like this become reality.

Samsung has a smart watch, the Galaxy Gear. However that uses a lot of power and Google sees that as one of the ways in which they need to be competitive. Their smart watch is being designed for decreased battery consumption. Apple does not have a smart watch available yet for their loyal clients.

As far as Apple customers are concerned, there is an alternative to the Google Glass. It’s the iPad Mini with retina display. This will be available in North America in late November.

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Online Ads, Adsense, Ad Blocking and Window Shopping

Online ads from Adsense and other providers, to me, are sort of like window shopping. In a way, they provide you with a teaser of what is inside a store. While passing by, you get a glimpse of what the advertiser sells.

All of us don’t stop inside stores just to find out a little more about what they offer. We don’t always have the time. However sometimes you will be surprised at the wide variety of products a physical store offers when you step inside. They may have one of your favorite products for less, or even offer something that you’ve been searching for.
Google Adwords logo
Google Adwords logo-via Wikimedia, PD by Google Inc
Online advertisers are just the same. Their ads give you a chance to see what they offer. They know you won’t always buy what they have but you learn more about them and may remember them when you have a need that they can fill.

Awhile ago I clicked on an ad that was unique to my country and location. It addressed something that I was specifically interested in. I won’t get too specific but customer representatives of that particular organization had been after me for months to get a particular thing done.

Of course, having more pressing matters to attend to, I kept putting it off, even though I would also benefit from taking action. Lo and behold, while visiting one of’s sister sites, I saw an ad related to the same thing. I clicked on it and started reading.

Turns out, I leaned enough from the ad for it to finally sink in that the task I’d been putting off was easier than I thought. I was able to take a few minutes and complete the task online and this will allow me to benefit in the future.

How about you? How often do you see ads related directly to your needs online? Do you have your ad blocker on all the time? Why? I think that personally, I‘ve benefitted more from ads than lost, in terms of pop ups etc.

Sometimes even the pop ups are helpful. Ads sometimes come up with information that I never even thought was out there. I get offers for discounts related to things I buy regularly because they appear alongside content. I would never have bothered to search for those discounts otherwise- I don’t have the time.
I get ideas for clothing, I see teasers related to the latest innovations in health. I don’t go out of my way to seek out this information but because I’m looking at a related product, it appears alongside whatever I’m reading. This is helpful to me.

The next time you see an ad, look at it with a fresh eye. Don’t automatically filter them out. The information they provide may help you become better in your profession or allow you to streamline your work in some way.

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