Snap is no longer just about Snapcat; the AR app company today entered the wearables market with its new pair of Spectacles.
You can now grab a pair of Spectacles through an online store — and not the single vending machine that was secretly shifting around LA last year — though there’s already a hefty queue. A set costs $129.99, comes in black, red, or blue, and delivers within the next two to four weeks. You won’t get them in time to show off on the GDC showfloor, then, but you can expect to start seeing the human race sporting the circular specs towards the end of march.
While the Snapchat app is heavily focused on AR with overlays for selfies, this first-generation of Spectacles is focusing squarely on recording memories. The right lens has a small camera with a 115 degree field of view embedded in its frame, while the left has a light that indicates recording is taking place. Click a button on the frame and you’ll take a 10-second clip (or Snap) that you can instantly add to your Memories in the Snapchat app. Clips can be extended up to 20 or 30 second intervals, too.
A charging case and cable are both available from the site, though they’re also included with the Spectacles themselves.
While the Spectacles may not have any AR capabilities just yet, they are a potential first step to that eventuality. We doubt Snap has interested in more elaborate, expensive AR and mixed reality (MR) systems like HoloLens that allow you to play games and access apps, but a device that one day combines these new recording features with the ability to overlay AR images on top of faces definitely seems like a logical step. With the cheaper (though still not insignificant) price tag, these could be the first wearable headsets that truly start to catch on with the mainstream