Snapchat debuts sunglasses with built-in camera

Snapchat teases its new wearable tech in a YouTube video. (Source: Snap Inc)
Snapchat teases its new wearable tech in a YouTube video. (Source: Snap Inc)

San Francisco - Snapchat said it will release a wearable gadget called Spectacles, which resembles a pair of sunglasses with a built-in camera for shooting video. A limited supply of the product will be sold this fall for $129.99, a spokesperson said on Saturday.

Spectacles will come in one size and three colors. The wearer can tap a button near the hinge to record video of up to 10 seconds using the wide-angle lens on the glasses.

The product represents the first foray into consumer electronics for the startup behind the popular messaging app. The Los Angeles company, valued at $18bn by investors this year, said it will change its name to Snap Inc., reflecting its larger ambitions.

Snap said Spectacles captures video in a new circular format that can be viewed full screen whether holding a phone upright or on its side. The device transmits the recordings wirelessly to a smartphone. It is similar in some ways to Google Glass, a widely mocked wearable device from Alphabet.

Evan Spiegel, the chief executive officer and co-founder of Snap, has been testing a prototype of the glasses since at least early 2015, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

Snap posted a promotional video for Spectacles on YouTube and is expected to show off the gadget in New York next week.

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