Google is ending the Google Glass Explorer Programme

In a few days time, Google Glass will no longer be available in its current form. That’s because Google is ending the Google Glass Explorer Programme to “focus on what’s coming next”.

The announcement came yesterday in a Google+ post from the Glass team, and it means that Google will no longer be producing the Explorer Edition of the headset. It’s not the end for Google Glass, though, because the BBC is reporting that Google is still committed to the programme and still intends to release a full consumer version sometime in the future.

The decision to end the Epxlorer Programme was apparently influenced by the fact that Google Glass is no longer just a concept that’s experimented on by Google’s top-secret X labs. Instead it is now its own entity within the company and the team will now report to Nest CEO Tony Fadell. Why him is unclear, because Google has stated that Glass will not become part of Nest — nor will there be any changes to the Nest team.

The shutting down of the Explorer Edition might seem like a failure to those outside of Google, but it should be emphasised that the Explorer Edition of Google Glass was never a consumer product. Instead it was more of a development kit aimed at showcasing the technology and allowing developers to work with the hardware. That’s also probably why it was ludicrously priced at £1,000.

If you really want to get your hands on an Explorer Edition Google Glass before its too late, Google will be pulling them from sale on 19th January. As for the availability of future versions of Glass, Google has said that the next version will be released “when it’s ready”.

Tom Pritchard

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