google glass

Investment firm Fidelity designs a Google Glass app

The research arm of financial services firm Fidelity Investments has developed the first Google Glass app targeted specifically at investors and traders.

Fidelity Labs has been participating in Google's early development program to produce software, or "Glassware," for the hands-free and voice-enabled "smart glasses" devices, with the aim of providing stock quote information on the move.

As highlighted in its explanatory video, the Fidelity app has been tailored to provide information relevant to employees working for investment firms. For example, a wearer can state the name of a company to bring up its stock price on the transparent display, or receive alerts about companies in their portfolios. It is even possible take a picture of a logo to automatically pull up trading information of the relevant company.

Fidelity has also set up a community forum to encourage feedback on the development of the application, and has begun a test to provide quotes from major indexes at market close.

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"We encourage investors to join with us and offer their insights and feedback on emerging technologies, such as the Fidelity Market Monitor for Glass, our first step in exploring the potential of wearable computing," said Sean Belka, senior vice president and director of the Fidelity Center for Applied Technology.

Google Glass, which could be on general sale by the end of the year, has drawn concerns over security capabilities of the devices. However there have also been indications that the smart glasses could see some uptake by enterprises operating in specific vertical industries.

A recent report from analysts Juniper highlighted expectations for swift growth in the wearable technology, with shipments of wireless devices forecast to grow from 18 million in 2013 to 170 million by the end of 2018.

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