I'm not a huge Snapchat user but there's something about the new Snapchat Spectacles that is making me use the app more and more!
There's a saying in photography that the best camera is the one you have on you. Snapchat's Spectacles are just that, they are a camera that is built into the frames of your sunglasses and they take quick 10 second videos and upload to your phone.
I've been using the new Spectacles by Snap Inc for the last 7 days and they are darn impressive. They look and feel like regular sun glasses. It's a treat to have a video camera on your face and not having to hold your camera or your phone to capture memories. Recording from the Spectacles became second nature, it was easy and effortless.
When recording at a sporting event or a concert using the Spectacles there is nothing between you and the performers. With a phone or a camera, in a way it hinders the experience a great deal for you and potentially those around you... with Spectacles you can both enjoy the moment and capture it at the same time.
Spectacles are the first hardware product from Snap Inc and they are $130 a pair. Set up was super easy and the glasses are light and feel surprisingly comfortable on your face. Spectacles are great at filming interactions with people. Face to face videos are spot on because they are filmed at eye level exactly the way you see things. Also, videos that are experimental videos where your hands are otherwise occupied Spectacles are great for because you won't be using one hand to juggle the camera while the other demonstrates what you are trying to film.
There is a white LED light circling around letting others know that you're filming, so it meets all regulatory and compliance laws and privacy suggestions. Battery life advertises about 50 snaps or an entire day of use and I can say I was able to use them for about 3 days without having to charge them once. The hard yellow case that the glasses come in doubles as a case & a travel charger so you are able to get five charges out of it on the go.
Video quality is surprisingly good, I only have 2 suggestions or areas of Opportunity.
1. I wish it took still pictures and not only 10 second videos.
2. You can't see what you're recording in real time; this is part of a larger problem with the Spectacles. With a traditional camera you typically have the LCD screen to see what you are filming, all be it small it helps you adjust and focus on what you want to capture. With Snapchat's Spectacles you don't have that luxury yet in the app or anywhere built into the shades.
The way that Snap Inc in Venice, California is coming to market with the Spectacles is pretty impressive in itself. They started out on the West Coast and they're working their way east to NY and dropping Snap Vending Machines at random places in the US creating quite a buzz. Like anything that has inventory quantity constraints at launch it begs the following question. Is it a marketing thing for companies finding ways to create a demand (for something that otherwise would not be there) by holding some of the product back? Either way, I believe it's such a unique approach for going to market, Snap Inc isn't spending tons of money on marketing or carrying the glasses in retail outlets yet, the consumers are tweeting and snapping their experiences live and in real time doing all the campaigning the Spectacles need to be a national success.
Like the Apple Watch, the cool factor is a 10 out of 10 in my opinion and Snapchat isn't taking their own product too seriously... Do we need the Snapchat Spectacles? Absolutely not. But do I enjoy them a whole hell of a lot and do I see the potential? Absolutely.
Being able to capture something the way that you saw it is a really cool thing. Kudos to Snapchat for taking a risk and coming out with a product that we might not need, but somehow we will wait in line for hours in the cold to get one or pay double on eBay. I'm going to go out on a limb and say we're going to see multiple different versions of this kind of a product in 2017.
I am a young, go getter and I am very curious, a goal of mine is to learn something new every day.