Google’s unveiling of its new Nexus 7 tablet wasn’t really a surprise, but this certainly was.
Company co-founder Sergey Brin made an unexpected appearance on stage at the Google I/O conference this morning to serve as the master of ceremonies for an elaborate stunt to promote the company’s augmented reality glasses.
It started with skydivers in a blimp over San Francisco, wearing the company’s Project Glass prototypes to show the view from their perspective in a Google+ Hangout as they floated down for a landing on top of Moscone Center, site of the event. From there, the prototypes were delivered down to the conference call by stunt cyclists and a climber rappelling down the side of the building.
The point? Mostly to grab attention, apparently. The project leaders are now demonstrating the Project Glass technology, with point-of-view pictures from people wearing the glasses.
When he came back on stage, Brin said he was excited that the whole thing actually worked. He then announced the Google Glass “Explorer Edition,” available for exclusive preorder by I/O attendees — intended for developers and not consumers. It will cost $1,500 and it will ship early next year.
Here’s the video of the keynote, with the stunt starting at 1 hour, 36 minutes.
Here are screenshots from the live stream.