Google vows Glass will respect our privacy

Google has said it won't allow facial recognition apps for Glass until "strong privacy protections are in place".

Google Glass has already stirred up its fair share of concerns, but Google says it's listening, and is putting in place safeguards so no one's privacy suffers.

In a Google Plus post from the Project Glass account, Google vows it "won't add facial recognition features to our products without having strong privacy protections in place. With that in mind, we won't be approving any facial recognition Glassware at this time." But is it enough to sate the naysayers?

In other words, anyone hoping to make an app for Glass that'll tell you who someone is the minute you look at them is out of luck. According to AllThingsD, Google also said developers won't be able to disable the Glass display while using the camera. The display will light up if someone is videoing or taking pictures, letting the rest of us know, so we can pull our trousers up look our best.

Google has also extended existing Android policies for hate speech, gambling and explicit material and added them to the Glass terms.

Many will welcome Google being more responsive to privacy concerns. The company has never quite recovered from that little incident when its Street View cars collected data from unsecured Wi-Fi networks while out and about. There are still many questions to be answered though. What will life be like in a world where everyone is recording everything they see all the time? And what exactly do these "strong privacy protections" involve?

Glass is expected to launch around the end of the year, and to cost around £1,000 . I'm excited, as this could be the first step we take towards doing away with the smart phone. But at the same time, I'm not sure how I feel about everyone effectively becoming a walking video camera.

What do you think of Glass? Are these privacy concerns justified? Let me know in the comments, or on Facebook.

About the author

    Joe has been writing about consumer tech for nearly seven years now, but his liking for all things shiny goes back to the Gameboy he received aged eight (and that he still plays on at family gatherings, much to the annoyance of his parents). His pride and joy is an Infocus projector, whose 80-inch picture elevates movie nights to a whole new level.

     

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