Anyone remember Virtual Boy? You know, that innovative 3D game technology that turned out to just be a Game Boy on a stick? Do yourself a favor and YouTube a few vintage ads for that. Now go check out Google Glass's promotional video and see if you get that same novelty vibe. Be honest.
But look, we're not going so far out on a limb to say that Google Glass is the next Virtual Boy because, well ... we all still want one. Also, they already did it for us. Just watch the video, which, like the Virtual Boy ads, simply can't manage to downplay its own faults. It's as clear as ... something clear ...
#5. It's a New Way to Be Completely Distracted
That's right -- through the awesome power of modern innovation, Google Glass is offering a whole new way to slam into a taxicab door while riding a moped.
Natural selection has never been so expensive!
Throughout the entire "How it feels (through Glass)" ad we see a potpourri of people doing shit like flipping around on a trapeze, performing at a ballet, skiing, figure skating, handling large reptiles, riding a horse, fire juggling, and fucking flying a plane -- you know, all the stuff you really shouldn't be on your phone for.
See, the beauty of Glass is that instead of having to pull out your cellphone while performing heart surgery so you can text your brother what a ribcage looks like, now you don't have to use your hands -- because that's totally safer. What's interesting is how many moments they show us where the person's life is literally on the line and he or she is recording video or sending a message -- it's kind of like they want us all to die.
Comes with a charger, an instruction pamphlet, and a vial of anaconda hormones.
#4. The Most Advanced Way to Sound and Act Like a Total Asshole
It's something we just don't have enough of, right? Jackasses walking around talking to themselves on various electronic devices. Until now, however, they usually needed someone else to talk to. Not anymore!
For some reason, the video shows us just what kind of an annoyance that will be as a lady goes over the top of a roller coaster screeching "Record a video!" to herself.
"Save video file under 'douchebag-1'."
How fun is that? The best part is, since it's all controlled by voice command, people will have to do this shit for everything! See, there's a reason that most iPhone customers use Siri only for texting and making calls: It's really annoying for anything else. But thanks to Google Glass, we'll now get to buy produce with some newsie-hat motherfucker blocking the baby carrots while screaming "Gogol Bordello tickets!" over and over at the top of his lungs while staring at nothing in particular.
This doesn't actually seem lost on the makers of Glass, whose video features a man eating Thai food in the middle of a boat asking between noodley smacks of his fat tongue how to speak in another language. What they don't show you is his girlfriend sitting behind him rehearsing her breakup speech.
"How do I say 'My retarded space glasses cost more than your whole boat'?"
#3. It's Nothing That Will Actually Make Your Life Any Easier
It's the clear difference between a novelty and a useful product, after all -- Google Glass is being sold as a functional product more than anything else, so the big thing they need to show us is not just that it's functional, but that it's functional enough to be worth a shitload of spendin' money. It sure as shit better not be less functional, right?
This is the picture feature, shown only once in the video. A little girl blows a bubble, and her kidnapper says, "OK, Glass, take a picture." A moment later, the picture is taken right before the bubble pops. The entire ordeal takes five seconds, which is about 4.5 seconds longer than it takes to just press a damn button. What if she accidentally coughed or the girl ran off in that time? The bubble literally pops right after the picture is snapped, almost intentionally showing us the brief window of time we'll have to shout commands at our own face.
Aside from that, the video shows us that we'll probably still be late to the airport and still need directions, two things that a smartphone can help us with just fine -- even if we're on the Golden Gate Bridge.
Yes, please God, sharp turn right.
Is that the Golden Gate Bridge? We're assuming so, despite the fact that the voice in the video calls it "this bridge" and all the focus is on the graphic and not the scenery. That actually brings us to the most noticeable part of this video ...
#2. The Best Parts of the Ad Are When There's No Glass
Not unlike actual life, the best parts are the moments where something isn't popping out at you from a pseudo-dimensional ghost plane. Surprisingly, the people who made the ad apparently agree with that, because almost a quarter of what is going on features no upper window at all, seemingly boasting that Glass is so good that it'll act like it's not there. You know, like glass, or better yet, air.
Not pictured: giant distracting thumbprint.
These quiet moments juxtaposed over the product remind us of how intrusive it is when they do show it, like while playing with your kid or at Nana's birthday party.
"Without video, I'd have no memory of these events whatsoever."
Or perhaps enjoying the amazing human achievement that is skydiving.
But instead you'd rather watch someone else watch you skydive, which totally doesn't make you insane at all. Finally, the entire video comes to its closing argument as a lady watches a horde of hot air balloons fill the sky -- something she'll no doubt never see again in her lifetime.
It would be a lot better if you weren't in my fucking face.
#1. You Should Probably Just Buy an iPhone Instead
For starters, your iPhone won't give you lice from everyone insisting on trying it out at parties. But don't get us wrong here; we're not pulling some surprise ad for Apple products on you. Google is the one who started the conversation. Check out their packaging for the Glass:
Yeah ... looks like someone wants to be like their big bro. Look, Google -- we know you want to seem hip and innovative, but doing that actually requires you to be innovative. Putting small black text on giant white things doesn't make you a leader in smartphone design any more than making everything dark blue makes your superhero movie gritty and successful. There's more to it than that. But if you want to play this game, go right ahead. Let's see your Web page.
Yeah, we thought so. Are you trying to confuse Apple geeks into buying this, or did your marketing guys seriously hit this out of the park for you?
Anyway, thanks for the heads up, Google. Once again, no one is saying that this is going to flop except for you ... but if it does end up like Virtual Boy, we totally called it.