Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Latest Google Glass firmware update drops data tethering requirement

Google Glass can now communicate for less. As opposed to earlier editions of the device's firmware, as noted by on Sunday by Engadget, the new XE9 firmware means that the device no longer needs to be tethered to a companion device to access a data connection.

Instead, XE9 and the latest update to Google's MyGlass companion app talk to each other (via Bluetooth) and bypass triggering the tethering connection that carriers are looking for.

This means that as far as carriers go, there is no evidence that Google Glass is using its companion Android device's data connection. That sort of tethering requires an extra fee for a tethering plan.

Carriers might prove to be averse to this development. However, right now Google Glass smartglasses are only in the hands of a few public Explorer testers, meaning this won't disrupt their bottom line, much.

Things might change, though, when Glass hits retail.

Google Glass is the Internet giant's foray into wearable computing. While it has a number of apps of its own, the device has no integrated data connectivity. Instead, it relies on wi-fi or on a companion android device paired via Bluetooth.

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