Saturday, 11 February 2012

Google Planning Mystery "Personal Communication Device"

Google obviously has a major interest in mobile devices, as should be patently clear from its work on Android for smartphones and tablets. We've heard recently about some more out-there projects, like the idea ofan Android based pair of glasses with a heads up display  The latest to pique our interest arrives thanks to an FCC application, in which Google describes its plans to test a "next generation personal communication device".

The application mentions that the device will use Bluetooth and WiFi for communication, and will undergo testing both at Google facilities and in the homes of employees. The purpose of this testing will be to confirm the basic functionality of these devices, while seeing what kind of a load they'll place on WiFi networks.

So, just what might Google be up-to here? Those Android glasses could certainly be a candidate for the mystery project, but the sky's really the limit. We know Google loves the opportunity to do some real-world data collection when it gets the chance; maybe we're looking at something that will act as a crowd-sourced sensor net of some kind, uploading data over WiFi when a network is within reach. Whatever it is, it doesn't sound like a regular smartphone, but that's probably in the right ballpark.

Google's requested to perform its testing through the middle of July; maybe we'll learn more about these mystery devices sometime around then.

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