Glass, a UX point of view

You probably already know Google Glass, and maybe even read on how to create Glasswear, but what about a UX point of view.
In this article we will be discussing the UX of Glass.


Glass was designed to be used everyday and everywhere as content provider, so having a easy and clear UX is essential.
Its UX is remarkably consistent with the UX of other Google products: crisp and flat.
Controlling Glass through voice commands, navigating from the touch-sensitive side or using the camera button on top, are all done with ease.
Lets have a closer look at some of these UX features.


The home card is the starting point for all things Glass, and from this screen, you can invoke Glass through voice activation.
A user can activate the home card, and basically use Glass by either tapping the touchpad or tilting ones head (up).
Why they chose to add this feature, I still don’t know, but using this “head wake up” only enhances the weirdness of wearing Glass.


Talking about voice activation, when you actually want to have a look at some of the voice triggered actions, you first have to say the magic phrase “ok Glass”. Doing so will show you a list of voice commands that are available by default.

As supposed to the “normal” way of navigating (swipe forward, backwards or down), you view the list by looking down. This isn’t a smooth experience and leaves a lot to be desired.


The UI is driven by the timeline, a series of information cards displayed depending on what you’re doing and where you are in the timeline.
For example, to go to the previous cards (photos, messages, emails, etc.), you swipe from back to front, pulling up the past from behind you.
Cards associated with upcoming events, like Google Now cards for traffic, flights, restaurant recommendations, etc. are all ahead of you. So you swipe backward to pull those things into your view.

It will take you a bit of time to get the hang of it, but eventually you will master it.


In conclusion, Google has managed to simplify the UX. The technology is there when they want it but out of the way when they don’t.
From an UX point of view it’s not really as consistent, and there is definitely a learning curve.
So Glass has still a long way to go, but is paving the way to new possibilities.

Up next: Glass, a Developers point of view.

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