Google Glass has raised lots of questions since its release. The wearable tech has raised privacy issues, and has already been banned by several private businesses. Now safety is being called into question as well; specifically the safety of wearing glass while driving. A California woman was recently pulled over for wearing Glass behind the wheel, sparking discussion and debate over the safety of Glass and future wearables.
Cecilia Abadie, a Google Glass Explorer, was pulled over by the California Highway Patrol yesterday for distracted driving. The ticket, which she shared on Google+, was for Distracted Driving and noted that Abadie was wearing Google Glass and driving over the speed limit. The ticketing officer viewed her use of Glass behind the wheel as equivalent to having a TV device distracting her from driving.
Phandroid dug up some of the legal language behind California V C Section 27602 Television, the law that governs the use of devices while driving:
A person shall not drive a motor vehicle if a television receiver, a video monitor, or a television or video screen, or any other similar means of visually displaying a television broadcast or video signal that produces entertainment or business applications, is operating and is located in the motor vehicle at a point forward of the back of the driver’s seat, or is operating and the monitor, screen, or display is visible to the driver while driving the motor vehicle.
The debate is only beginning, and some groups are already advocating to exempt Glass from the statute, arguing it’s similar to GPS devices, which are legal and deemed not overly distracting. Still several local and State governments have put bans into motion, to ensure that Google Glass and other wearable headsets
This debate comes on the heels of news that Google’s pushing further ahead with Glass. The company recently upgraded the hardware (in a pretty minor way) and the new model will be rolling out to Explorers who wish to swap their current models. Explorers will also be receiving 3 invites to give out to friends, which will quadruple the amount of Glass out in the wild. On top of these moves, rumors are swirling that a barge in the San Francisco Bay holds a floating Google Glass store. Whether or not this is true, all signs are pointing to a consumer release of Google Glass happening soon!
If you ask me, Google Glass doesn’t belong behind the wheel. You shouldn’t be reading emails, playing games or doing anything else that takes your focus away from the road while you’re driving. You can use Glass for navigation, but the fact that it has so many other features makes it potentially distracting and therefore dangerous. I know this might be an unpopular opinion, but it’s the conclusion I’ve come to.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments!