Opinion: With smartglasses, can Apple succeed where Google failed?

The headline isn’t quite fair: Google has actually reinvented Glass as an enterprise product, and I’m sure it will be successful in that field. The application shown in the video – a technician carrying out a wiring task by referring to head-up video displays rather than paper manuals – makes obvious sense. I’m confident there will be many more engineering and business applications that will prove equally successful.

But it also seems clear that Google has abandoned all hope of selling Glass as a consumer product. It wasn’t just that normal people reacted badly to the device (of which more in a moment), it was also that the geeks who so enthusiastically lined-up to buy the Explorer Edition mostly found that the novelty wore off. It wasn’t too long before most devices were gathering dust.

If the rumors are correct, and Apple is indeed planning to launch its own smartglasses, can it succeed in turning the technology into an appealing consumer gadget … ?