TK · Dec 24, 2013 at 11:00 am

Device Review: Google Glass XE 2.0

Google Glass XE 20Google Glass XE 2.0 is the refresh of last year’s XE Glass hardware. The main difference here is that you can now use a micro USB mono headset to listen to your music and make or receive calls on the device. Google started to offer replacements to first gen owners so they can enjoy the updated units. Also, a select few had the opportunity to buy an additional set, a change from last year’s one unit per person.

Unfortunately, the battery life is still the same so you will get about a day of light use and 5 hours of normal usage. So if you wish to use the device a lot, you will need to keep a charger with you. Hopefully, the mass market release of Glass will bring better battery life.

In the Box:

  • Google Glass Unit
  • USB 2.0 Sync and charge cable
  • Wall charger
  • Active Sun Shades
  • Mono ear buds

 cover and for the article

HARDWARE

The Glass units pack a dual-core 1.2 GHz Texas Instruments OMAP 4430 SoC. The processor is more than capable of running the entire library of available Glassware. You can even side load apps that normally run on a smartphone. The display is like having a 25” display at about 10 feet away, mounted above your right eye.

Device Specifications:

  • Dual-Core 1.2 GHz Texas Instruments OMAP 4430 SoC with Power VR SGX540 GPU
  • 5.0 MP Camera
  • 640×360 Transparent Display
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • 16 GB of ROM (12 GB Usable by the user)
  • Android 4.0.4 with the Glass Launcher on top
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • WiFi 802.11/b/g

timthumb

Over the course of a week of testing, the battery would last me about a little over 10 hours with light use and 5 hours of normal use. I would recommend having a charger with you during the first few days of getting Glass, while you get used to its limited battery life. The build quality of the unit is very good, I would say that it feels like an expensive pair of glasses. The ergonomics are very well balanced. You will not feel the unit on your head, as it is designed to be unintrusive.

Overall, the Glass Unit should give a great view into the future that Google is trying to create. They are really trying to get people to accept wearable tech such as glasses. The XE 2.0 will also be compatible with the prescription inserts in 2014.

Screenshots_2013-12-23-17-46-18

Interface

The Glass unit runs Android 4.0.4, skinned with a Glass launcher. The implementation is visible in every aspect of the UI, and it is presented as a card style UI (similar to Google Now). You would not think it is ICS at first glance, but the fact that you’re able to load regular APKs on Glass shows it Android roots. Of course, the apps might not work as well as on a smartphone. I have seen people load Nova Launcher and get it to work on Glass.

Multitasking is present here as well, as you can run navigation and listen to your music at the same time. The interface does not offer picture and movie sync with your connected Android or iOS device yet. But with my Note 3 USB OTG cable, I was able to connect Glass to my phone and download the files with ease.

The camera has a wide angle, fixed focal length (no zoom) lens so you get a lot in your picture. There is a dedicated camera button, which is also used to extend the 10 second default video shot. Messaging apps will get you connected with Hangouts and text messages via your connected device.

I was able to get used to using Glass within a few hours, and was comfortable with operations after a day.

20131223_153251

DESIGN

The Glass units come in black, white, grey, red, and blue, so everybody should be able to find a color that works for them. The frame is made with metal and plastic, and it looks great. The inserts for the shades make it even more functional for daily use.

I found that wearing Glass is a great conversation starter. This type of tech is still very new, and most people have heard of Google Glass, but haven’t seen it yet in real life.

IMG_0004

FINAL THOUGHTS

The design is great, and Google is really making progress with getting people to accept Glass. Google has started to offer more invites to get people into the XE program, so more and more people will be able to experience Glass.

The Good:

  1. Lightweight
  2. Functional
  3. Easy to root (Google provides root img file)
  4. Endless possibilities

The Not so Good:

  1. Price point
  2. Battery life
  3. Battery Accessories (to help battery life)

I would recommend the Glass XE program to developers and early adopters. But unfortunately, the price is just a bit high for what it offers most general consumers. If you have a chance to talk with an XE Glass owner, ask them all the questions you have. I’m sure they will be very happy to share their thoughts as well.


Full review on Baayta.com


_________
Want something on the XDA Portal? Send us a tip!

TK

Tkdsl is an editor on XDA-Developers, the largest community for Android users. XDA TV Producer... View Tkdsl's posts and articles here.
Mario Tomás Serrafero · Apr 18, 2015 at 10:00 am · 4 comments

Open War for Open Android: Antitrust for Cyanogen?

Android and openness is something we talk about all the time, but the recent developments in the industry point towards inherent flaws with this very premise. Be it from bloggers, political institutions or corporations, Android is seemingly not open enough. The “War on Openness” is ironically becoming an open war, where many players are increasing their stakes and scope to try and land a bigger hold - or at the very least, restrict Google’s - on what is the world’s...

XDA NEWS
Emil Kako · Apr 17, 2015 at 01:22 pm · 3 comments

What Do You Do with All of Your Old Photos?

Smartphone cameras have advanced so tremendously over the past few years that they have almost completely replaced point and shoot digital cameras for the most of us. Furthermore, since our smartphones are always with us, the majority of us end up taking tons of photos throughout the lifespan of our devices. But what happens to all the old photos you take? Do you store them on an external hard-drive or keep them backed up to an online cloud service like Flickr? Let us know what your favorite way of storing old photos is and why.

DISCUSS
Faiz Malkani · Apr 17, 2015 at 01:04 pm · 1 comment

Diving into the April 2015 Material Design Update

Before the release of Android 5.0 Lollipop, the Holo Design guidelines served as the official reference for Android design, right from IceCream Sandwich to KitKat. However, updates to the guidelines were few and far between, leading to a lack of synchronization between Android design and current UI/UX trends. Google seems to have learned from their mistake the last time around, and earlier this week, a significant update was released for the Material Design guidelines, marking the second revision in less...

XDA NEWS
Share This