Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Snapchat Spectacles are now available for direct purchase through Amazon

After introducing them to the world with buzzy, pop-up vending machine drops and then eventually expanding to direct web orders, Snap has begun selling its Spectacles camera glasses through Amazon. All three colors — black, coral, and teal — are available for the usual $129.99 price and are eligible for next-day delivery. The Spectacles are sold directly by Snap and fulfilled by Amazon.

Spectacles were Snap’s first hardware product and had their big moment last fall, when Snapchat rebranded itself as “a camera company” and began distributing the glasses, capable of recording short 10- to 30-second video clips, at randomly chosen locations. The vending machines attracted long lines, and Snap even opened a retail location in New York City during the holiday shopping season.

Spectacles record a unique, eye-level perspective and produce video that can be viewed on a smartphone in both portrait and landscape orientations. My main critique with the experience has been Snapchat’s smaller than usual size, but otherwise Spectacles are a fun product that execute on their promise — even if it seems their time in the spotlight came and went fairly quickly.

Sales are thought to be very modest; Recode projected that Snap sold only about 60,000 pairs of Spectacles last quarter. The company has consistently referred to them as an experiment and admitted that Spectacles “have not generated significant revenue.” The $129.99 price has not been lowered since the product launched.

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