Google Glass Scores Coverage From Largest Optical Insurance

Jan 28, 2014 11:13 am ET

Jan. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Google Inc.’s glasses, computerized eyewear that enables users to check e-mail or listen to music, will be covered by the largest optical insurer in the U.S., VSP Vision Care.

VSP Vision, which covers 20 percent of all Americans, will reimburse members for frames and prescription lenses for the device, Jim McGrann, president of VSP Vision, said in an e-mail today.

Google Glass eyewear is only available to testers and developers and offering the frames is the next step in making the devices available to more consumers this year, Google said on its website. The Mountain View, California-based company made available four frames and two shades in addition to the original. VSP Vision is training eye-care professionals how to fit lenses for the frames.

“Glass is one of the most exciting optical-related technologies brought to consumers in the last decade,” Matthew Alpert, chairman of optometric innovation at Rancho Cordova, California-based VSP Vision’s parent company, VSP Global, said in the e-mail. “Glass clearly has many potential benefits for the profession of optometry and the 60 million patients VSP Vision Care serves.”

The frames are $225 and shades are $150. Reimbursement will vary depending on customers’ vision plan.

--Editors: Bruce Rule, Angela Zimm