Google Glass app dev kit out as a 'sneak peek,' promises rich future ecosystem

Google Glass
Fun Glass times ahead

Google Glass' public release may still be a ways off, but its maker is forging ahead with priming it for mass distribution.

Google has released a sneak peak of its Glass Development Kit (GDK), and while this may not directly affect the average consumer, it means much for developers. Heck, anyone can access the GDK, you'll just need Glass to test an app on it.

According to Glass Developer Advocate Timothy Jordan, who presented the sneak peak, "the GDK is super straightforward and simple." At its core, the kit lets developers create apps using standard Android APIs compiled for Glass. To insert Glass-specific features, Google has created an add-on.

What all this means is that Google has essentially created a full-fledged app-building environment for Glass, one that looks better than the Mirror API and helps ensure users will have a host of applications at launch.

We'll see how developers respond once they start using the GDK - it won't be released fully for a while - but on the surface Google looks to have eliminated as many hurdles as it could have. When non-Explorers start to purchase Glass, apps shouldn't be hard to come by.

If you have 37 minutes to spare, you can tune into Google's GDK sneak peek presentation below:

More Google Glass apps

Along with the GDK, Jordan introduced five new Google Glass apps that were built with the kit.

Spellista is a word jumble game, and GolfSight gives users info during their golf round, such as how far they are from the next hole or where the closest course is. Strava tracks runs while Allthecooks pulls up recipes so you can keep chopping, stirring and sautéing with both hands.

By far the most exciting of the bunch was an app called Word Lens. Already available on Android and iOS, the app is a real-time translation tool, and with the command, "OK Glass, translate this," Word Lens will translate text (such as a warning sign in Spanish) into a language you choose (and presumably one you understand).

It's no mere projection; the translation is actually overlain where you're gazing.

The GDK is very much a preview, and future apps will break as the kit is tinkered with. However, it is a significant step in Glass' journey towards consumer hands ... or sorry, make that heads.

Via TechCrunch

Michelle Fitzsimmons

Michelle was previously a news editor at TechRadar, leading consumer tech news and reviews. Michelle is now a Content Strategist at Facebook.  A versatile, highly effective content writer and skilled editor with a keen eye for detail, Michelle is a collaborative problem solver and covered everything from smartwatches and microprocessors to VR and self-driving cars.