Google Announces Native Glass Developer Kit, Will Be Able To Do More Than The Mirror API

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Google held a session today hosted by Timothy Jordan, developer advocate on Project Glass on how to develop for the gadget, and while most of it focused on what developers can do right now with the available documentation and Mirror API which makes use of a tethered phone’s capabilities, Jordan also spoke briefly about Google’s upcoming GDK or Glass Developer Kit, which will be a native development framework for Glass hardware itself.

The GDK will be available at a later date, Jordan said, and didn’t get more specific, but it will allow developers to access a “handful of things” that they can’t currently do with the Mirror API. While the mirror handles 80 to 90 percent of what Google has found users want in a good Glass experience, there are things like offline tasks and access to hardware features like location that require a native API. Hence the GDK.

This will enable “immediate access to hardware” and Glass’s built-in capabilities, so that Glass developers will be able to build things like navigation apps on Glass itself, so you can find your way even if you’re not necessarily connected to the web.

The GDK is in development, and we’ll likely see it before Glass gets its big consumer debut, since it seems like this is a piece of the puzzle that could contribute significantly to the final user experience.