Google Glass was a much anticipated wearable tech. It was launched with great fanfare to select users and then, just as quietly, retreated into the background due to a number of reasons. However, it is still in active use in specific manufacturing areas, and that does not mean smart glasses are done with. The future for smart glasses is bright.
- Apple has lots of plans
Apple believes smart glasses will be just as revolutionary as smartphones were. It does have dozens of patents and development of smart glasses is in full swing with a specific rOS (reality operating system) for smart glasses. Within the next decade smart glasses are likely to become mainstream just as smartphones are today. Instead of the bulky head gear that they are at the moment, the future smart glass will look just like glasses.
Apple’s X series smartphones feature animoji that can mimic the user’s facial expression and user can also change the background during selfie video. This will translate to augmented reality or even virtual reality in smart glasses with huge potential for the ecommerce space. When Apple smart glass goes mainstream one can expect dozens of manufacturers to come up with look-alikes and that will really kick off ecommerce website developments to include use of smart glasses and augmented reality. Apple has already outed its ARKit from its T288 smart glasses group.
- Present smart glasses
Google glass is in use but in manufacturing areas. Then there are bulky smart glasses with specialized functions. The long and short of it is that in their present evolutionary state, smart glasses cannot be worn as normal glasses in public.
The future smart glass will look and feel like normal eye glasses. Further, they will present a uniform view across both lenses and be capable of augmented reality inclusions to enhance the user experience. This means people can wear such glasses while out on the street and not receive funny looks from passers by. In fact, a new Google patent shows a glass with screens in both lenses. Users can view video and augmented reality scenarios.
Possible changes in ecommerce due to smart glasses
The possibilities of ecommerce website development expand considerably when one includes smartglasses and augmented reality.
- For instance, a shopper can have an experience similar to shopping in retail brick and mortar stores. He can walk through aisle and view several products. He can handle and view the product from all angles. If need be he can call up a product demo.
- If augmented reality is included in sunglass included ecommerce website development then he can sit back at home and, if he is buying furnishings or sofas, he can place the objects in the living space to know just how exactly they match the surroundings.
- Voice recognition can be included into smart glass ecommerce website development and a shopper can view a product, speak out his order and complete payment transactions without lifting a finger. Amazon already has Alexa virtual assistant. It is a short step to developing and incorporating bone conduction glasses to speak out commands.
- When you use a smartphone, you have to check it for notifications. Smart glasses that replace phones could display the notification in the form of a blinking light or text right in front of your eyes and ecommerce sites can push offers. Shoppers can use voice search to find ecommerce sites and then progress to the payment stage using visuals and voice. In fact people could transition from audio search to visual search that makes use of AI implementation and image recognition technology. Smart glasses with camera embedded can be used to photograph a product and then use it for visual search and purchase. You can use it for comparison shopping. The possibilities are endless. You can walk into a store, capture the QR code on a product with glasses and make payment with voice command. Pinterest has debuted its Pinterest Lens as a visual discovery tool and that adds another dimension to ecommerce. While normal people will appreciate it, the physically challenged will find this really helpful. When it comes to secure payment, the glasses may be used to scan irises.
How does all this affect ecommerce website development?
Ecommerce relies on standard tools, either open source platforms like Magento, PHP/MySQL and others or proprietary tools to build, deploy and manage ecommerce sites and payment gateways.
- Smart glasses introduce a whole new set of changes that will render these technologies obsolete unless they include technologies for the future.
- Ecommerce website development will need to include augmented reality and artificial intelligence along with specific smart glass APIs and plugins or even operating systems otherwise ecommerce sites will just not delight visitors.
- Ecommerce website developers will need to work closely with tools such as ARKit and understand intricacies of the reality operating system from Apple, as well as similar systems from Google and Amazon.
- As shown above, the smart glass mixed with audio or speech capability and iris recognition for authentication could well become the norm in future ecommerce purchases and payments. Naturally, ecommerce site developers would need to become expert at incorporation of all these into a seamless buying experience.
- Movements of the eye can be tracked and the company has a patent on pay per gaze to help track which type of ads are noticed by wearer of smartglasses. Developers may need to become expert in incorporating these technologies into ads or transplant it to a page that lists many articles and know which one is eyecatching. Given the nature of smartglasses, use of microcopy could increase in ecommerce.
Smartglasses, AI and AR working in tandem are likely to usher in a revolution in online shopping as well as other fields. Ecommerce site developers of the future will need to adapt and be able to seamlessly integrate these technologies in ecommerce site design. Shoppers will love using smartglasses and shopping on sites that incorporate these technologies in a wonderful way.