Spectacles are Snap’s first foray into wearable technology. The sunglasses feature an integrated video camera that the company claims is amongst one of the smallest wireless cameras in the world and is capable of taking a day’s worth of Snaps on a single charge. This particular pair of wearable sunglasses provides an 115-degree field of view, which captures the world from a more human perspective and is a slightly different view than what phone cameras provide. Unlike the Snapchat app, usability for the Spectacles was made to be simple – the user simply taps the left side of the glasses to start a traditional 10-second recording. While this may seem short, it follows Snapchat’s traditional style of 10-second video stories, however it is possible to record videos up to 30 seconds long with these glasses. It is practically impossible to be discreet when using these glasses as LED lights on the frame let people know when you are recording. The Spectacles work via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi and allow the user to automatically share and save videos recorded with the glasses without having to plug the glasses into a phone.
It seems as though Spectacles are just the start of products for Snap. Snap explained the reasoning for the name change, “Now that we are developing other products, like Spectacles, we need a name that goes beyond just one product – but doesn’t lose the familiarity and fun of our team and brand.” However many Chicagoans will agree that changing the Snapchat name to Snap is like changing the name of the Sears Tower to the Willis Tower – the people who were around for the original will likely still call it by it’s original name. Most importantly though, Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snap, doesn’t want people to take Spectacles too seriously and referred to them as more of a fun toy, “We’re going to take a slow approach to rolling them out. It’s about us figuring out if it fits into people’s lives and seeing how they like it.”
Article Written by Mila Medonaite for Design Engine, September 27, 2016