Snapchat's New Spectacles For $130 Have A Built-in Camera To Record 10-second Videos

Samir Makwana

The Snapchat Spectacles are official. Snapchat's 26-year-old CEO Evan Spiegel says Spectacles are a smart wearable for video-sharing, according to the Wall Street Journal. Since this is the first hardware product offering, Spiegel stated that the company is taking things slow with Spectacles and shall release limited units for $130 this fall. This update comes within a few hours of the leak of Snapchat's entry into hardware segment reported by the Inquisitr.

Snapchat has christened its name to Snap Inc. and calling itself a camera company. The new Snap Inc. name makes sense since it is branching out to hardware products and kick starting that with Spectacles. The Snapchat app will continue to exist as one of the software offerings.

Snapchat's Spectacles are the first camera-centric product from Snap Inc. Spiegel jokingly refers it as the new toy. That's what most people call the early-stage wearables. According to Business Insider, Spiegel was spotted publicly wearing Snapchat's prototype glasses last year.

— Engadget (@engadget) September 24, 2016

The Spectacles have a small wireless video camera integrated at the upper corner towards the outside. The camera can capture 115 degrees field of view to give a more human eye perspective. A ring of LED light surrounds it just in case of low-light situations.

There's a button on the frame to start recording a 10-second video in a new circular video format. The Spectacles pack a battery inside and can be used to capture videos throughout the day on a single charge. The protective case acts as a charging case for the Spectacles.

Next, you can connect the Spectacles to Snapchat via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to transfer the recorded footage. Despite the circular video format, the captured videos play in full screen on all the phones. You can save the videos in Memories or send it to your friends.

Take a look at the Spectacles' introduction video below.

So, how did Snapchat suddenly become interested in cameras and smart wearables? Well, the company had been secretly working on the smart glasses project since 2014. According to The Verge, Snapchat had secretly bought a smart glasses maker called Vergence Labs for $11 million in cash and $4 million in stock. Vergence Labs is responsible for making Epiphany Eyewear, the smart glasses that can record videos at the touch of a button, upload them to a cloud storage or keep in the built-in storage up to 32GB.

Snapchat also recruited one GoPro member and one from Google's Project Ara, the ambitious modular smartphone initiative. With such experienced camera, hardware, and wearables industry specialists, Snapchat quietly poses a threat to its rival social network Facebook.

Snapchat's Spectacles takes a page from the Google Glass design and just makes it a bit more user-friendly. In Google Glass, the users have to stare at the display on the top-right corner and use it as a ubiquitous mini-computer. Whereas, the Spectacles are your average sunglasses with integrated cameras, without any displays. Also, the Google Glass costs more than almost eleven times at $1500 compared to the $130 Spectacles. It would be like comparing apples to oranges.

Snapchat will sell Spectacles for $130 in Black, Teal, and Coral color options. However, the company hasn't announced a date when the Spectacles will go on sale.

[Featured Image by Carl Court/Getty Images]