Business

Samsung imagines a device for your face

Above: A patent drawing of the Samsung "sports" glasses, from the Korea Intellectual Property Rights Information Service

Image Credit: Samsung
NOTE: GrowthBeat tickets go up $200 this Friday at 5pm Pacific. VentureBeat is gathering the best and brightest in modern digital marketing to help declutter the landscape, simplify the functions, clarify the goals, and point the way to success. Get the full scoop here, and register by Friday to save!

The intelligent-glasses category may have another participant as the marketplace shapes up. Samsung, according to a newly revealed patent, is joining Google – and reportedly Apple, Microsoft and others – in wanting to put its logo where your eyes are.

On Thursday, the Wall Street Journal posted a story that Samsung’s patent for “sports glasses” was registered in October in its home country of South Korea. The described device enables a person to take phone calls while exercising, view informational alerts from the phone over one of its two translucent or transparent eyepieces, and through earphones integrated into the frame, listen to music during the multitasking workout.

Apps platform?

More than Google Glass, the Samsung device appears to be happy living its life as a peripheral to a smartphone. The patent drawing, for instance, shows a wire connecting the glasses via micro-USB. No mention is made of such wireless connectivity as Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, although one assumes they would be available, nor is there any indication that Samsung Glass – assuming the tech giant wants to keep the singular usage Google has adopted – is a platform for apps, as Google Glass is.

Interactive headgear and smartwatches, including Samsung’s recently released Galaxy Gear, are the most visible manifestations of wearable computing devices, which have been on the drawing board since at least the late ’80s. But be careful what you wish for.

In another story, the Journal recently reported that, as computing devices become easy to wear, companies are – surprise! – quite eager to capture every action your body or mind takes during a day. Smart badges, for instance, can make you more visible to management than you ever want to be. Just imagine the finely-detailed chunk of dynamic data that you could become if you were also wearing a smartwatch and interactive glasses.


We're studying digital marketing compensation: how much companies pay CMOs, CDOs, VPs of marketing, and more, with ChiefDigitalOfficer. Help us out by filling out the survey, and we'll share the results with you.