Microsoft Building Rival For Google Glass: Report

Dennis Faas's picture

A new report from The Wall Street Journal suggests Microsoft is working on its very own version of Google Glass, the high-tech, Internet-connected spectacles.

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) says it has learned from sources inside Microsoft that the firm has been discussing such technology with "several" component manufacturers in Asia.

These companies are reportedly being asked to supply Microsoft with cameras and other parts as the Redmond, Washington-based firm works towards completing a prototype.

Microsoft Afraid of Being Left Behind: Source

However, the report provides a couple contradictory notes.

For one, while it says Microsoft's interest in wearable technology may be purely experimental -- meaning no Microsoft-built Google Glass rival ever makes its way into stores -- the report also says Microsoft is focused on not being left behind in this emerging market.

Microsoft is "determined to take the lead in hardware manufacturing to make sure the company won't miss out on the opportunities in the wearable gadget market," the source reportedly told the WSJ. (Source:

This isn't the first time we've heard rumors about Microsoft smart spectacles. Back in June 2012 a leaked fifty-six page report indicated that the firm was developing augmented-reality glasses for the Xbox One, Microsoft's successor to the Xbox 360 video game console.

'Fortaleza' Coming in 2014?

Such technology was code-named "Fortaleza" and had been given a loose 2014 launch date. But with the Xbox One's own release date (November 19, 2013) fast approaching, there's no sign of Microsoft Fortaleza smart specs anywhere on the horizon. (Source:

That said, other experts insist Microsoft is interested in somehow combining the kind of hardware seen in Google Glass with Microsoft's own Kinect technology.

In fact, ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley recently reported that Microsoft Kinect designer Alex Kipman is taking charge of wearable technology development. (Source:

However, Kipman and his team may be more interested in developing a virtual reality headset (like the one being built by Sony for the PlayStation 4) than something akin to Google Glass.

Microsoft hasn't yet commented on the rumor.

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