An American court has dismissed a ticket issued to a motorist for allegedly operating Google’s new ‘Glass’ system, a wearable computer mounted on a frame that sits above the user’s eyes.
San Diego Court Comissioner, John Blair, said the traffic ticket, issued in October, had been dismissed because there was no evidence that the user was actively operating the device while driving.
The Glass system, still in a limited ‘beta’ release and available only to approved applicants, is described as a hands-free device that responds to voice commands.
The system is capable of taking photos and shooting video, searching the internet, displaying specialised apps and making phone calls.
Running a version of Google’s Android operating system, Glass displays a small image in the user’s field of view without blocking visibility of the surrounding environment.
A number of companies have begun to roll out Glass apps focused on motoring, including a new navigation app from Mercedes developed specifically for a seamless experience while walking or driving.
It is believed that the defendant, Cecilia Abadie, is the first Glass user to be cited while driving. (Posts on Abadie's Google+ profile suggest she has used the device while driving in the past, however.)
While it is legal to conduct a phone call through a hands-free device, Abadie is understood to have been cited under laws that ban video or TV displays from being active in the front row of a moving vehicle.
Abadie had pleaded not guilty to operating the device while driving.
"Glass was not on and I honestly don't use it much while driving but I do wear [it]," she said.
At least three US states have confirmed plans to establish new laws that would make it illegal to wear the Glass headpiece while driving.