If you are unaware of Snapchat – it is a fun, and some times addictive, messaging app, that allows you to share video and photos, add graphics or filters to them. Think, a media heavy (and friendly) WhatsApp or Facebook messenger. Why friendly? Well the video and photo content you send removes itself from your friends device once it has been viewed.
Last year Snap, the parent company of Snapchat, released their first item of hardware, Spectacles; Smartglasses that work with your smartphone. Launched in North America to start, they have now made their way over the pond!
Snapchat, although for everyone, has become most popular with teens, but with the release of the Spectacles, I genuinely hope its appeal broadens. Even if they don’t, they will make a great gift for a teen ahead of their summer holidays (just watch those data roaming charges!!).
The Smartglasses are not to dissimilar to a normal pair of sunglasses, with the exception of the two circular points at each corner of the frame. They offer UV protection and were designed as stylish sunglasses first and a wearable camera second, the other way around would surely have led to a flop!
As you look at the above image, the circular point to the left is the lens, which has a 115° field of vision which is meant to mimic how the human eye views the world. When you watch the video back in Snapchat it plays in a circular format. It can also adapt to use the full screen.
The other side houses the action button and LED circle. The button on the top of the frame is used, firstly, to sync your Spectacles to your phone, then from there onwards you push it whenever you wish to record. The LEDs will light up to show that you are recording and they also act as a battery indicator.
App & Usage
You can use Spectacles with the Snapchat app on Android or iOS. Once you pair with your handset via Wifi or Bluetooth (iOS only) you are ready to capture your life! Just push the button to instantly start recording.
You can record up to 30 seconds but the video is then broken down into 10 second segments when transferred. The videos then show up in the memories section in the Snapchat app where you can edit and add filters before sharing.
If you’d rather export the videos, you can do, but the quality is nowhere near as good as capturing the video direct from your smartphone, but that is not the purpose of Spectacles!
The battery life will allow for around 100 videos (about 8 mins of footage), but the case which comes with the Spectacles acts as an “on the go” charger. It should take about 90mins to fully charge the case.
The Snap Spectacles can be purchased online for £129 or if you are feeling lucky you can try to catch a Snapbot!
Snapbots are Snaps funky vending machine for the smart glasses and move around. You can track and locate them on the Snapbot Map, but the Spectacles are the same price. Be warned though, there is only one in the UK!