Google Glass XE12 update brings lock screen, Hangouts messaging and wink photo capture

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from  Omaha, NE
| December 17, 2013

Google Glass Hangouts messaging

Time for your monthly Google Glass update. Google just announced on its official +GoogleGlass Google+ page that the new XE12 update is rolling out starting today, Dec. 17, complete with some pretty significant improvements. Here's the rundown of the new features:


  • Lock screen: Google has added in a lock screen to keep others from using your Glass. The lock screen can be bypassed using a "secret Glass handshake" that can be configured in the device's Settings menu.
  • Hangouts: Support for Hangouts chat and sending photo messages has been added.
  • Upload to YouTube: Videos can now be uploaded directly to YouTube from Glass. After enabling the app in the MyGlass app, users can record a clip and then either swipe the it to the YouTube card or simply say "OK Glass, upload to YouTube."
  • Wink: A new setting allows users to quickly capture a photo with a simple wink of the eye.
  • Music: Google Play Music All Access subscribers can listen to playlists, radio or use the "I'm Feeling Lucky" function to have a playlist created for them that's based on their listening history.
  • iOS app: An official MyGlass app will be released on iOS, allowing iPhone users to become Explorers as well. The app briefly went live in the App Store earlier today, but Google says that because this XE12 update is required to use the app, it has pulled the listing from the App Store and will reenable it later this week.


Overall this looks like a pretty beefy update for Google Glass that I'm sure many Explorers will be excited to get their hands eyes on. The addition of a lock screen will be a nice way to help protect your $1500 Glass and its data from being compromised by an unwanted party, and while the "wink to take a picture" functionality may sound kind of weird at first, it ought to make capturing special moments with Glass even easier. The iOS app is also a welcome site because it opens up Glass to an entire new group of users, which is why it's kind of weird that it's taken Google this long to get an iOS app out. 

The Google Glass XE12 update is slated to begin rolling out to users today. You can find the full release notes at the appropriate link below.

Via +GoogleGlass, XE12 release notes