Snapchat Spectacles Zeitgiest

Recently, Snapchat changed its name to Snap Inc. and with its rebranding came the announcement of their first hardware product: Spectacles. These sunglasses will have an integrated video camera and will hit the market this fall at the price of $130. Spectacles will record circular video with a 115-degree lens that resembles a person’s field of vision. This will allow users to seamlessly view footage in both portrait and landscape mode. Snap Inc. also claims that this new way of capturing video will enable users to re-live their memories.

Recording on the Spectacles will be as simple as clicking a button on the left side of the frames. The sunglasses will be able to record 30-second videos at a time and will let users create 10-second snaps. Spectacles will work with both iOS and Android devices and will use Bluetooth to connect directly to Snapchat’s Memories feature. The sunglasses will also come with their own charging case, allowing for wireless charging.

Spectacles are naturally already being compared to Google Glass but Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snap Inc. was quick to call his hardware product a “toy.” As opposed to Google’s smart glass attempt, Spectacles will be much simpler, cheaper and more aesthetically pleasing. Currently, Snap Inc. will be releasing Spectacles in three colors: coral, teal and black.

This move towards hardware comes as no surprise as Snapchat has recently encountered increasing competition from Instagram and other video-sharing apps. Snap Inc.’s move to diversify their product in order to reach a broader market through hardware is a smart move in the current tech world. With a user-base encompassed of primarily young people, this “silly toy” might actually be a hit. Especially considering its release will be just in time for Christmas. However, without constant innovation from Snap Inc. this success has no chance of remaining sustainable in the long run.