Friday, November 11, 2016
Snapchat’s Spectacles were available yesterday from strange yellow vending machines
Snap Inc. made waves a few weeks ago when it announced Spectacles, a pair of $130 sunglasses with a camera on it that connect to your smartphone to take and send snaps. Now the company has revealed how you’ll actually be able to buy a pair: from bright yellow vending machines — called “Snapbots” — that will travel around the country selling the device.
Each Snapbot will be in place for about a day, starting with one located right by Snap Inc.’s headquarters near Venice Beach in California. Prospective buyers be able to track where the Snapbots are located using a map on the Spectacles website.
Snap Inc. has said that the Snapbots will be the only place you’ll be able to buy a pair of Spectacles, at least for the first few months. Ellen DeGeneres showed off the Spectacles buying experience with some snaps sent earlier today. It appears that the Snapbot uses a built-in camera to allow potential buyers to virtually try on the Spectacles (in a manner similar to Snapchat’s augmented reality photo filter) before buying.
Additionally, if you can’t make it to a Snapbot but want to try out how a pair of Spectacles would look on you, Snap Inc. has a QR code on the Spectacles website that you can scan to add a limited-time filter to Snapchat for virtually trying them on.
Now, after selling out in fast fashion, the glasses are showing up on eBay for as much as $950. Many of the pairs are available for between $300 and $500, yet those pairs are moving quickly up the price ladder as more bids pour in. Not everyone is trying to milk eager fans for all their worth. One listing is offering five pairs, and it’s only at $760 with 86 bids so far.
Spectacles, which are Snapchat’s low-cost take on Google Glass, are designed less as a way to broadcast every waking moment of your life and more as a neat and fun accessory to take out in social situations. The idea is to let people use a discrete, hands-free version of Snapchat at parties and other places you’d normally see people taking out their phones. The glasses allow you to press a button to record 30-second snippets of video that are then sent directly to the Snapchat mobile app.