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Desig websites for Google Glass

Friday, March 14th, 2014 by Servage

Google Glass is rapidly gaining momentum and by end of 2014, it could have a million users. Learning the art of web designing for Google Glass is the future. This post will overview the Google device and hint at some design techniques.

The latest version, XE7 beta, has a web browser; thus, the hope is that Google Glass will one day be on par with smartphones. I suggest now is the time to get on board the train of Google Glass development. As a Google Glass web developer, we have a new set of challenges to face, such as updating our existing site to be compatible with Google Glass or creating a distinct one just for savvy users of this type of technology.

What Exactly Is Google Glass

Google is offering a groundbreaking communication device that you wear in similar way to eye glasses.  The piece looks so ingenious, it is sure to garner attention and will likely be a conversation starter. It also has capability of taking pictures, augmented with location based functionality..

Though Google Glass is the first of its kind, it is manufactured by an industry giant, so its future is bright. It offers an array of opportunity for developers, as was the case of Android in its inception. As Google provides free and  open source approaches to many of its offerings, we can assume as the sales of the device grows, developers will continue to come up with relevant and feature rich applications. Other Google Glass-like products are showing up in the market, such as Glass Up, along with other OHMD products. Companies like Innovega and more than 50 other high tech businesses are competing in the field of augmented reality, coming at it from various angles and disciplines.

Fortunately, all such companies need developers which means web developers must design revolutionary websites for these Google Glass-like web browsers. Learning techniques compatible for this type of web development is essential for the next generation of web developers.


An obvious constrain deals with user interaction of browsers, as the device is far smaller than desktops and closer in size to smartphones. Without a pointer tool and absent motion hand gesture, the device could very well limit interactions with website content and access. Currently, there is limited zooming and scrolling ability, so fonts need to be bolder and bigger than even that of smartphones.

Plus, as it stands now, you only use one eyeball and a single finger to interact with sites on Google Glass. There is but one permitted interaction: tapping or scrolling a touch bar. Moreover, the device’s screen moves in front of your vision without a digital background so any  desktop or RWD designed website will display everything out of contrast, including fonts.


Due to such constraints, you currently can’t fill forms or do other interaction intensive work on Google Glass. Therefore, you have to select categories of websites that that are eligible for Google Glass viewing. Viewing a typical website is possible on Google Glass, though reading its text isn’t because fonts would render it too tiny to read. Here is where your mobile first approach to designing will work and having an updated RWD is the only viable alternative.

When doing RWD or mobile specific designing intended for Google Glass, you most likely need proper contrasting of colors in every layout. Plus, your links should be specific and easy to use as you there are limited interactive gestures available for Google Glass.

References & More Reading

The Web Designer’s Guide to Google Glass
Glass Up
Google Glass competitors vie for attention as industry grows

Desig websites for Google Glass, 4.5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings
Categories: Guides & Tutorials


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