Google is getting ready to launch Google Glass in the world later this year and it wants to make sure there are no issues that could put a damper on the event.
More specifically, Reuters is reporting that Google is lobbying with at least three state capitals to try to put a stop to legislation that seeks to forbid people from wearing Glass while driving.
Eight American states are currently working on such bills. Wyoming has already introduced such a project, hoping to stop drivers from wearing Glass, even though the device hasn’t even become available for the public yet.
Google’s lobbyists have reportedly met with lawmakers in Missouri, Delaware, and Illinois, although additional meetings could be scheduled with other states as well.
Ars Technica reports that a lawmaker in Chicago believes that there’s an obvious reason as to why to ban the device behind the wheel. “I don’t want to hurt their business, but we can’t talk on the phone, we can’t text, and this is another way to distract drivers,” he said. Despite his statement, he admits to not having tried Glass himself.
Google didn’t exactly address the reports, but it did have a pre-written statement. “Technology issues are a big part of the current policy discussion in individual states, and we think it is important to be part of those discussions,” said Anna Richardson White, a Google spokesperson.
She continued, saying that while Glass was currently in the hands of just a few Explorers, when people actually got to try out the device, they could better understand how it worked and that it was not meant to distract people, but to connect them with the world around them.
Back in October, a woman from San Diego, California, was given a ticket for driving while wearing the device. Cecilia Abada, a developer, fought the decision in court, claiming that the gadget wasn’t even turned on.
Traffic court dismissed the ticket on these grounds in January, a decision that was well received by Google itself, which issued a statement at the time. Then, Google used a very similar wording to the reply that Ars Technica got today, claiming that Glass wasn’t built to distract people from the world around them.
Google Glass is currently still being tested out by Google and various improvements are made constantly. Currently, Glass is accessible to members of the Explorer program for $1,500 (€1,091) per pair, with accessories adding to that price.
Many expect that Glass will be available for a much lower price when it becomes available for everyone to buy.