updated 06:46 am EDT, Thu March 28, 2013
Google joins Apple in returning product manufacturing stateside
Google's high-profile augmented reality Glass eyewear is to be made in Santa Clara, reports the Financial Times. Google is said to be partnering with Chinese manufacturer Foxconn on the hardware, though Foxconn will be overseeing the operations in Santa Clara. Google is also keen to closely oversee the manufacture of the prototypes through to the production versions in order to maintain tight quality standards.
Google will join Apple in 'on-shoring' some of its manufacturing operations, returning jobs to US workers. Apple CEO Tim Cook announced in December that the company is investing $100 million on returning some of its Mac-making operations to the US. Apple, like Google, is also expected to draw on Foxconn's manufacturing expertise in running its stateside operations. Google, however, may still ultimately send the mass production of the Google Glass units off shore while Apple will manufacture at least one of its Mac lines wholly in the US.
On Tuesday, Google announced that it has started sending invitations to 8,000 contestants and developers who, if eligible, will be able to purchase the initial production run for $1500 each as part of its Glass Explorer program. The device utilizes voice commands to take photos and movies from a first person points of view. It also displays email and message notifications, can be used for navigation and searching the Internet among other functions.