Google's Brin: Smartphones 'Emasculating'

His issue: 'Rubbing featureless piece of glass.' Critics pounce
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 28, 2013 7:11 AM CST
Google's Brin: Smartphones 'Emasculating'
Google co-founder Sergey Brin, left.   (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

Sergey Brin thinks smartphones are "emasculating." "You're standing around and just rubbing this featureless piece of glass," the Google co-founder told a TED audience yesterday. That contrasts, apparently, with his Google Glass project, which has come a long way. It began as essentially "a cell phone strapped to your head," Brin said, per CNET. Observers have already jumped on his comments.

  • "Smart phones are emasculating but wearing geek glasses straight from 'Sixteen Candles' isn’t?" asked Clara Jeffery of Mother Jones in a tweet, via Bloomberg.
  • Actually, "with all their bells and whistles, today's smartphones resemble nothing more than one of James Bond's handy gadgets, and nobody ever accused the British superspy of being anything less than a man," writes Damon Poeter at
Regardless of manliness, Google Glass probably won't be replacing cell phones anytime soon—thanks in large part to cancer concerns, Quartz notes. The FCC has guidelines on radio frequency absorption in the human body, and having a cell phone radio right next to a single point on our body can't be healthy, Christopher Mims writes. As it stands, the glasses don't connect to cellular networks. (Read more Sergey Brin stories.)

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