Tony Fadell: I volunteered to save Google Glass

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When Tony Fadell was put in charge of Google Glass earlier this year, we wrote that the father of the iPod had been “tasked with saving Google Glass from extinction.”

According to a new interview with the Nest co-founder, that’s not entirely accurate, though. Fadell says that rather than being saddled with the project by Google, he actively asked for it.

“It wasn’t handed to me and said, ‘Tony clean it up,'” he explained. “I offered. I remember what it was like when we did the iPod and the iPhone [at Apple]. I think this can be that important, but it’s going to take time to get it right.”

Wearables: Doomed or darlings of the next decade?

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Do you own a wearable yet? Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac
Do you own a wearable yet? Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

After outselling all Android Wear watches within 24 hours, Apple Watch looked set to be the device that would finally give smartwatches their big break. But according to a recent report, sales of Cupertino’s first wearable have since nosedived 90%.

Friday-Night-Fights-bug-2It’s wise to take that report with a pinch of salt, but it got us thinking; if Apple’s first smartwatch really is a flop, which company can make a wearable worth wearing, and do wearable devices have a future at all?

Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight between Cult of Android and Cult of Mac as we battle it out over that very question.

The iPod’s godfather is still waiting for his Apple Watch

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From the sound of things, Nest CEO Tony Fadell learned quite a bit from working with Steve Jobs.
From the sound of things, Nest CEO Tony Fadell learned quite a bit from working with Steve Jobs.
Photo: Nest

Before creating the home automation company Nest, Tony Fadell cut his teeth at Apple by creating revolutionary products like the iPod. You’d think being one of the key guys behind Apple’s resurgence in the early aughts means you get hooked up with Apple products for life, but according to Fadell, he had to pre-order the Apple Watch like the rest of us peasants. And he’s still waiting for it to arrive.

Smart sport glasses want to be Apple Watch for your head

Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
The Recon Jet is Google Glass for sports like running and cycling. It's highly functional and works well, but still suffers from the Glasshole effect. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
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You rarely see Google Glass anymore, but if Recon Instruments has its way, you’ll be seeing plenty more head-mounted displays in the future.

The Recon Jet, launched Thursday, is a pair of smart eyeglasses for sporty activities like running and biking. Bristling with sensors, the device shows all kinds of biometric data and social stats on its tiny heads-up display. Paired with a smartphone, it can take pictures and video, send and receive status updates, find friends and family on the piste and much more.

But sports is just a start. If Recon is successful — and that’s a big if — we may be seeing smart glasses in a lot more places. Recon is betting hard that the face is the place for smart wearables.