Google adds prescription glasses to Google Glass

Google Glass is not actually a pair of spectacles, as the device lacks lenses but Google is addressing that, Associated Press reported.

The computerised, internet-connected Google Glass comes without lenses in the frame, but from yesterday, Google has started offering an optional attachment for prescription lenses and new styles of detachable sunglasses.

The move comes with Google Inc readying to make Glass available to buyers later this year, as against the current availability to only to the tens of thousands of people who were testing and creating apps for it.

The device is basically a tiny computer, with a camera and a display screen above the wearer's right eye. The device sits roughly at eyebrow level, somewhat higher than where eyeglasses sit.

Like a smartphone that users do not need to hold in their hands, it allows wearers to surf the web, ask for directions, snap photos or videos, read email, share photos on Twitter and Facebook, translate phrases while travelling or engage in video chats. The device follows a number of basic voice commands, spoken after the words "OK, Glass."

Meanwhile, The New York Times reported, Google and VSP, the biggest optical health insurance provider in the US, have struck a deal to offer subsidised frames and prescription lenses for Google Glass, the internet-connected eyewear.

According to the report, wearable devices are widely expected to be the next wave of computing, moving out of the realm of science fiction and into the mainstream by making them more affordable and giving them a medical stamp of approval.

The development would also open the door to a new level of cooperation between the healthcare and consumer electronics industries, which could lead to a world in which people wore or even ingested computers.

According to JP Gownder, an analyst studying wearable devices at Forrester, the key business model of the year for wearables was becoming embedded into the health care system. The research company predicts that computers that people can ingest, tattoo on their skin or embed in a tooth are three to five years from being a medical reality.

The NYT report quoted Gownder as saying selling wearable consumer electronics one-on-one to individual consumers was kind of a tough business. He added, by embedding them into the health care system, one could reach a mass market.