The company that pioneered the disappearing video has introduced glasses to capture a fleeting moment.
Snap Spectacles carry a camera, but not hefty expectations. Snap, Inc (Snapchat’s new official name) calls Snap Spectacles a toy – and now calls itself a camera company.
There is clearly some serious intention in the play. Snap wants to make wearable cameras normal so when more eye-popping capability is perfected, this digital device will seem as normal as a selfie-stick.
As Google discovered a few years back, wearable cameras raised eyebrows over privacy concerns. But Snap Spectacles show up on the scene after selfies and quickie videos have become more pervasive and less scary and over-the-top eyewear has become more common and acceptable.
A pair of Snap Spectacles is relatively inexpensive. They don’t transport anyone into the virtual, augmented or altered reality space. You shoot what you see. It is real-time, first-person reality.
So why does anyone care about this latest electronic gadget? Marketers care because the accumulation of Snap Spectacles footage could show what people choose to see and shoot. This “through-their-eyes” perspective is hard to get or replicate and can be extremely valuable in establishing a buyer persona.
The cross-section of people with the self-confidence or trendsetting sense to don Snap Spectacles may be limited at first. But even that could be an advantage of scouring the videos shot by what some might see as early adopters and influencers.
The spark that launched Snapchat, according to CEO Evan Spiegel, was to communicate “the full range of human emotion, not just a pretty picture.” Real-time Snapchat images weren't Photoshopped and didn’t linger in the cobwebs of social media. Snap Spectacles extends that principle to an even more personal viewpoint. It’s not what you stop and shoot; it’s what you see and shoot.
Snapchat is known for its clownish filters. Snap Spectacles could inspire clownish behavior to create special effects.
While there is continuing buzz about virtual reality goggles, Snap seems to be focused on a simpler formula – making it easier to record what you actually see as you see it. Getting people used to that could turn out to be as valuable as convincing people they could have a computer in their pocket.