Perfect presented a video life blogging service for Google Glass today at TechStars Seattle Demo Day, making it the first company launching a service for the wearable computing platform to be part of the well-known startup program.
The service is a refreshing take on Google Glass that gives people an arguably far easier way to make videos about their lives. Perfect softens the Orwellian image that Google Glass has as this all-seeing way to invade our privacy and make us all unwilling participants in a surveillance state. It by no means lessens the danger of such a future world but it does show how Google Glass is also a medium for expression that has advantages over the way video is now shot, edited and produced.
Google Glass users record video, which is then uploaded to Perfect. The user then picks three-second segments from eight videos which are then stitched together into 24-second long “trailers”. Editing video using today’s techniques is time-consuming, so most people simply don’t do it. Perfect seeks to simplify the process by keeping the clips short, easy to edit and easy to stitch together. A stream can be watched for as long as the viewer wants.
These trailers are then ready for viewing such as this one which Duan shared parts of on stage at the TechStars event. As he explained on stage, the video was for his grandmother to see what her grandson’s life is like in Seattle as he goes about his day.
It’s the Google Glass medium that makes Perfect so interesting. Viewers create video that flow together chronologically in a horizontal fashion. People view these “lifevlogs” as streams, which is different from the user interface of a service like YouTube.
Duan and co-founder Colin Hom went to Shaker High School together in Albany NY. Duan went to Duke to study engineering and Hom attended MIT. Afer graduation and living in Berkeley, Duan started using Google Glass to make videos, which he found as a natural way to use the Internet connected glasses. Hom then joined him in Berkeley where they started developing the service.
The challenge for Perfect comes with the timing of its service. It’s unknown when Google will bring Google Glass into full production. The two co-founders will launch new features as they roll out the beta and more people get the Google Glass product. They talked about charging for storage and add-on services but the emphasis now is more on developing the service. In the meantime, Perfect is not seeking outside funding. Their burn rate is about $4,000 a month which Duan said they can manage with the funds they currently have.
Duan did not have screenshots of the editing platform nor the timeline to show, which is unfortunate. It’s the tools and the platform which will determine much of the success of their work.
The TechStars Seattle class had a lot of talent but for me at least Perfect stole the show. Its potential as a business will take some time to understand due to the lack of Google Glass hardware on the market. More so, Perfect is a service that shows how much potential this whole concept of wearable computing will have as a medium for expression. With Perfect, Google Glass could take on another dimension as a new kind of video blogging platform.