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Google Glass Success Will Rely on Business Users


It's hard to think of a profession where wearing Google Glass may not become almost mandatory in a few short years from now. School teachers? Talk about a carrot and stick approach for encouraging excellence in teaching!

What about government bureaucrats sitting in City Hall, a state capitol or Washington D.C.? With Google Glass, the taxpayer might actually get to see what they are paying for, to the tune of almost $4 trillion per year on the federal level alone.

Many of us suspect that the vast majority of government bureaucrats do little else but surf porn between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. If we equip all government bureaucrats with Google Glass, each taxpayer could get a real-time view into what all of these millions of bureaucrats do all day long.

I suspect that the result would be a large majority of Americans quickly demanding that all government bureaucrats be fired, and their budgets eliminated. Google Glass would solve our budget deficit and government debt problems!

What about the impact on Google itself? There are at least two questions we have to answer, just for starters:

1. Will Google be first to market?

It looks like it. This kind of product requires a lot of resources spent on R&D, including time, to make for a good product. Google itself just barely hit the beta test stage, with final consumer product arriving in 2014.

It is pretty obvious that Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT), Samsung and others will also be in this market as soon as they can. Any early time-to-market advantage in a field such as this, could prove extremely important, however.

2. Does Android/Chrome have an advantage over iOS and Windows?

This is far from clear, but all other things equal, would you rather bet on what is perceived to be the more open operating systems? We can imagine a scenario where all other traditional computing hardware companies, from Samsung to HTC, LG, Huawei, Sony (SNE), Acer, Asus, Lenovo, HP (HPQ), Dell (DELL), Amazon (AMZN) and many more -- choose to build their own computerized eyeglasses based on Android or Chrome OS.

It is, of course, not a given that that they would. Perhaps they would decide to build their glasses to pair with iOS, Windows or BlackBerry's (BBRY) OS 10. Given the current rate of innovation and third-party momentum -- including Google's new best friend Facebook (FB) -- however, I think the odds are in Google's favor now.

The early Google Glass thought leaders and pioneers -- so-called "Glassholes" -- who are currently spreading the gospel of total societal transparency and intimidation along the Palo Alto University Avenue cafes, are all pairing them with Android smartphones, not iPhones. As Vlad Lenin said back in 1921, economic power is to control the "commanding heights" of society. In this case of Google Glass today, the Glassholes and the smartphones they use -- Android -- are the commanding heights of the new increasingly Google-fied economy.

Main Street in Peoria hasn't felt it yet, but the drumbeat emanating from Silicon Valley is increasingly in Google's corner.

At the time of publication the author was long GOOG, AAPL and FB.

This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

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