Oh, Snap! Rebranded company reveals funky new Snapchat Spectacles

26 Sep 2016

Still from 'Introducing Spectacles' video. Image: Spectacles/YouTube

Snapchat – now rebranded as Snap – has finally unveiled its latest wacky wearables, Spectacles, which can record 10 seconds of video shareable over the Snapchat app.

The decision to rebrand the company as Snap was in anticipation of the launch of its first piece of hardware that has now been unveiled as Spectacles.

For weeks now, speculation has been mounting that Snap would develop augmented reality (AR) glasses to be used with the Snapchat app.

However, the new details revealed about the company’s first piece of hardware show a much simpler concept; one that allows the user to take 10 second video clips using Spectacles.

Connected to the user’s phone via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, the glasses are activated by pressing a button near its hinge that will begin recording and, once finished, will transfer the file into their Memories.

Describing it as one of the smallest wireless video cameras in the world, Snap has revealed that its field of view will be 115 degrees, to bring it closer in line to a human’s field of vision. This makes it a rival option to more casual users of cameras, like the GoPro.

‘Figuring out if it fits into people’s lives’

Fusing fashion with tech hardware, Spectacles will be available in three different colours, with the light blue version profiled in its launch video.

As part of a feature interview with the Wall Street Journal, Snap founder and CEO Evan Spiegel revealed that the product will cost $130 (€116) when it is released sometime later this year.

Speaking on the potential outcome of the launch of Spectacles, Spiegel has said it will not be the company’s biggest earner, but rather an exploratory toy on the market.

“We’re going to take a slow approach to rolling them out,” says Spiegel. “It’s about us figuring out if it fits into people’s lives and seeing how they like it.”

Updated, 11.56am, 26 September 2016: This article was amended to clarify the difference between Snap the company and Snapchat the app.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic