Local Company Customizes Google Glasses With Prescription Lenses (VIDEO)

By Stephanie Parkinson - 21Alive

December 17, 2013 Updated Dec 18, 2013 at 12:09 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) - Although they're still not available to the public, thanks to a Fort Wayne company, Google Glasses can now be customized with a prescription.

"No one else has done this. And it's a real point of pride for us, and for our community," said Jeff Ostermann, President, Longe Enterprises Corporation. "We noticed right away, because we're an optical company, was they just didn't function very well for those of us who are wearing eye glasses."

Longe Optical is one of several companies, around the world, that got a pair of Google Glasses to test the new technology.

"Why do we need this? Well we probably would have said that before we had the iPhone come out right? And then you get your iPhone, and you think, how in the world did I ever live without this?" said Ostermann.

Google Glasses have the capability of doing things like giving step by step navigation to the user. The user can see the opaque screen in the right corner of their file of vision. This new technology does raise the question of safety. For example, is it safe to use them while driving?

"I think it's going to take awhile for everyone to figure out what are the appropriate boundaries of where this technology should and shouldn't be used," said Ostermann. "It takes responsibility, like anything. I'm wearing the unit right now. I'm not actually interacting with anything on this unit. It doesn't block the actual screen that I can see. It doesn't block my field of vision."

Ostermann thinks it has the potential to become as essential as a smartphone.

"I very easily could see the possibility that in the future people would be saying, how in the world did I ever get around town without having GPS right there in my field of vision," said Ostermann.

But don't get too excited. Google doesn't yet have a release date for the glasses. Ostermann expects it to be some time in 2014.

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