April 11, 2013
Google ‘Glass Collective’ Announced With Ambitious Investor Support
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
There´s no denying the cool factor of Google´s latest fling, Glass. Very few products have been able to deliver something so futuristic and bring a taste of science fiction to life. For all the cool potential of Glass, however, it´s yet to be seen if anyone will buy these spectacles or how many developers will create apps for them and make them all the more useful.
Yesterday, a group of investors announced something called the “Glass Collective,” an investment partnership which aims to find and fund apps built specifically for Glass.
This threesome includes the investors of Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and Kliener Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB). These investors are also taking a very civilized approach to investments, claiming they´ll share every pitch from Glass related start-ups to ensure equal opportunity amongst themselves.
“When you first see somebody wearing Glass, you might think “What can that thing do?” Well, quite honestly, we´re wondering the same thing,” explains Bill Maris of Google Ventures in a statement on the Glass Collective website.
“When entrepreneurs and engineers encounter a new computing platform, amazing things happen. Think how much the cell phone has changed, just from 2007 to 2013. We´re really interested in where Glass goes from here.”
This new partnership is further proof that analysts are certainly excited about the possibility of wearable computing. Analysts have also been drumming up rumors about a possible watch from competitor Apple.
The Glass Collective will not be a collected pool of money which developers and start-ups can vie for. Instead, the Collective will be an opportunity for these investors to hear pitches and look out for the best new software available for the new platform.
“This is a platform so new, so unlike anything before, that we can´t guess what the killer apps will be. But, believe me, they´re coming. The best ideas for the Glass platform will come from entrepreneurs – they always do,” Doerr said.
Doerr also told the New York Times that even though Glass has yet to ship and has only been used by a handful of developers and investors, the time to begin looking for and funding apps is now.
“I think it´s exactly the right time to kick-start an effort to support entrepreneurs,” said Doerr, speaking to the Times.
Developers will soon be able to get their hands on early units of Glass and begin perfecting their pitch to the Glass Collective.
Google announced yesterday that the earliest units will begin shipping to Glass Explorers this month. The Google Glass Explorer program includes developers who were willing to pay $1,500 for the opportunity to be among the first to play with the futuristic specs and begin writing software for them.
“This month Google hopes to ship Glass Explorer Edition, designed for the first people to examine the potential uses of Glass,” said a Google Spokesperson speaking to ABC News' Joanna Stern yesterday. “Developers can tinker with Glass and consumers can try it out in the real world.”