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Google Glass Survey: Only 10 Percent Of U.S. Smartphone Users Would Buy Google Glass If They Could Afford It

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Google Glass team members wear Google Glasses at Google I/O. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu) | AP
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OK Glass: I'm not sure I want to buy you.

One year after wowing the world with Google Glass at its annual developers' conference, the augmented-reality specs allure seems to have faded a bit. According to a survey released Wednesday, mobile applications specialist BiTE interactive revealed that 38 percent of people would not buy or wear Glass even if it were priced within their budget.

On the other side of the spectrum, 10 percent of American smartphone users would buy and regularly use Google Glass if they could afford it. But some other stats discovered by BiTE are less encouraging: 45 percent of people surveyed thought Glass would be too socially awkward or irritating and 44 percent don't find any of Glass's current features appealing.

Though many people feel these statistics are bad news for Glass, there's a compelling argument that's not the case. "A 10-percent adoption rate is hardly a pessimistic outlook," writes Brian Fung from National Journal. Fung compares these numbers with the iPhone's history: "In the first quarter of its existence, the iPhone made just 270,000 sales. It took another two years for it to break the 31-million mark." Maybe the numbers aren't so bad after all.

The thing is, though, Google Glass is unlike anything anyone's ever seen before. The iPhone was a smarter cell phone. The iPad was a bigger iPhone. People don't have anything to compare Google Glass to, so they don't have any idea if they'll like it. It's a phone... on your face? With a camera? It's hard to imagine.

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