The new Google glasses (called “Glass”) were all over the tech news last week. This combination smart phone, network PC, and glasses have me thinking about how a simple set of eyewear has the potential to advance customer service.

I got my first close understanding of Glass from a conversation with my son Andrew who lives in San Francisco and has met a few trial testers of the glasses. More recently this cool video appeared on USAToday showing capabilities including:  taking pictures or video of what you look at, directions, doing a web search, sharing socially, and more.  Just as the “start button” in Windows was the starting point a few years ago on your personal computer, all you need to do to “start” is say “OK Glass” to start your voyage.

So what will Glass potentially bring to customer service?  Companies like Genesys have long led the charge on contact center innovations and this new cool product will no doubt bring new value to consumers yearning for a great immersive, always-on customer experience.

So what kind of service could we see with Glass?

  • Better Customer Support/Helpdesks.  Imagine assembling something or connecting a cable box and need help. A company could now verbally or visually show you right on the glasses. This is help you can see.
  • Home Shopping.  Imagine driving by a “for sale” house that catches your eye. You could look, verbally snap a picture and send it to your realtor: “When we meet this weekend can you find me a house like that?”
  • Fender Benders. In an accident you could take a video clip and file a claim verbally on the spot.
  • Vacations.  While out and about, you could call the concierge at your resort, they could see what you are looking at and you could ask “is this restaurant good  or a good beach for windsurfing
  • Hospitality.  What if beverage or wine retailers offered a concierge advice service where you could look at the wine list at a restaurant, send a picture to them via Glass, and get advice?  And add it to your online shopping cart for your next visit?
  • Shopping.  See something that you like while walking to work? Route the item you to your personal shopper for help. And if the product isn’t in stock, order online.
  • Medical Care.  Innovative companies like Kaiser already allow you to email your doctor for advice, but what if you could show your advice nurse a sprained ankle?  This brings new meaning to connected medicine. Combined with advanced routing you could then be routed to a doctor for immediate help just like an old-fashioned house call
  • New ways to share socially.  What if you could you look at a business and “like.”  Just say “OK Glass, Bouchon Restaurant, Facebook Like, Yelp Like, Share with family.”  With the explosion in new comments, solutions like Genesys Social will be key for companies to listen and respond to customer comments.
  • Unanticipated impacts? What happens when the actual service experience is recorded?  Will people start offering you better service knowing you could be recording them?  Even “live” service would be improved by Glass.

These are just a few theories from a guy who loves tech (and customer service).  We’ll have to wait for Glass to appear commercially to be able to look through this window and see what’s next on the customer service horizon.  What do you see coming?  And, let me know if you can get me some of those glasses early.