Samsung has made it clear it wants to dominate the wearables market. It has already launched two generations of smartwatches and now appears to have turned its sights on smart glasses.
“The smart glass will present our aim to lead the new market with proven capability.”
But does Samsung have what it takes to beat Google Glass? Here’s what we know so far…
Samsung Galaxy Glass Launch Date
If rumours are to be believed, the Samsung Galaxy Glass will be unveiled at IFA 2014. The massive tech fair runs from September 5th to 10th in Berlin.
According to a story ran by the Korea Times, a source within Samsung said that the tech giant will show off its smart glass gadget at IFA.
However, unveiling a product isn’t the same as launching. Samsung has a habit of unveiling gadgets up to two months before they actually land.
That said, we can’t see it launching it in November; it’s likely it will want to capture as much of people’s Christmas shopping money as possible. As such, we’d guesstimate Samsung will likely launch it either late September or early October.
But an immediate launch? We doubt it.
Samsung Galaxy Glass Looks
In the middle of April, details of a patent leaked. Significantly, the patent included an image of a device now widely believed to be Samsung’s smart glass.
According to the patent, the display will be made from “a transparent synthetic resin material". In addition, it will offer “wearable augmented reality and real life experience of being able to listen to a variety of sources”.
It isn’t the first pair of smart glasses the company has filed a patent for. Last year, the company filed designed for a device that looked more like traditional eyewear.
That patent was filed in South Korea early last year, though it only came to light in October.
Dubbed “sports glasses”, they had a translucent or transparent frame, side buttons and a panel at the front that appeared to hold a camera and a heads up display.
Unlike the latest patent, the sports glasses were wired, suggesting that they weren’t a standalone device.
It’s currently unclear if the latest leak is a standalone device, or one that would connect to a smartphone in a similar way – albeit through Bluetooth/NFC rather than a wire.
Samsung Galaxy Glass Name
Quite where the Glass moniker came from, we’re not quite sure. We’ve looked around for an answer, but couldn’t really find one. Our best guess is that someone referred to it as Samsung’s Glass and the name stuck.
Chances are it won’t launch with either the word Galaxy or Glass in it.
Samsung has been slowly moving away from the name Galaxy for all of its devices aside from its tablets and smartphones. Its most recent smartwatch and fitness gadgets have adopted the name Gear.
We’d be very surprised if Samsung didn’t follow this naming convention and go with the name Samsung Gear “Glass”.
Equally, we’d be very surprised if Samsung stuck with the name Glass for its headset – if that’s what it was ever called. The reason for that is simple – if a little boring. Because that’s what Google has called its smart headset.
Personally, I think the closest we’ll see is something like Samsung Gear Smartglass.
Samsung Galaxy Glass Price
How much will Samsung’s Galaxy Glass cost? The honest answer is we don’t have a clue. However, there have been hints dropped by Samsung over the last couple of months.
In the interview with The Korea Times, the executive said Samsung is keen to get first mover advantage. It’s also likely to use a similar strategy with Google as it has with Apple – undercut.
So while we don’t have any firm – or slightly unfirm – figures, what we can do is look at what Google is likely to do with its own Glass headset.
Currently, Google sells its Explorer edition Glass headset for $1,500 (£892). It has said that it will reduce that price tag when the consumer version comes out. However, it hasn’t said by how much – only that it would be “significantly less” that what it currently sells for.
As such, we really wouldn’t be surprised if Samsung’s own version came in at an absolute maximum of £400.