Facebook launches Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses, it cost £299 in the UK and $299 in the US
On Thursday, Facebook unveiled its first smart glasses, a step toward its goal of providing genuine augmented-reality eyeglasses.
Ray-Ban Stories are a pair of sunglasses featuring twin inbuilt five megapixel cameras, a three microphone array, and discreet open-ear speakers that cost £299 in the UK ($299 in the US).
Images and video taken using Facebook's glasses may be posted to TikTok, Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms using a smartphone.
The glasses, which were developed in collaboration with Ray-Ban manufacturer EssilorLuxottica, enable users to listen to music, make phone calls, and shoot pictures and short videos, which they can then share across Facebook's services through a companion app.Sunglasses fans may have anticipated for this, but they may not have expected the popular brand to collaborate with Facebook to produce these first Stories spectacles.Well, it's official: even Ray-Bans are now technologically advanced.
The cooperation entails sending pictures and movies recorded with the twin cameras hidden into the outside corners of each pair of Stories to the Facebook View app for iOS or Android, where they can be handled. The new smart glasses also have the capacity to start recording or snapping a picture using certain speech commands, according to the social media giant. Alternatively, each pair has a touch control on the right temple-piece.
The Stories each feature three microphones and speakers, allowing the user to conduct voice calls or utilise the glasses instead of earphones. As a result, they combine the features of prospective competitors such as Razer's Anzus and the long-forgotten Snapchat glasses.
The glasses were "intended to let people live in the present and remain connected to the people they are with and the people they wish they were with," according to Andrew Bosworth, the Facebook executive who heads up Reality Labs. [Ray-Ban] has been nothing short of outstanding in our collaboration, and because to their dedication to quality, we were able to deliver on both style and substance in a manner that will redefine smart glasses expectations.
“We're offering a whole new method for individuals to remain connected to the world around them and really be there in life's most critical moments, while also looking good.”
Facebook managed to cram a lot into a frame that's just a few millimetres thicker and five grammes heavier than a typical pair of Wayfarers. With a long or short touch of the device's single button, each wing of the glasses conceals a camera that can capture five megapixel still pictures and video of up to 30 seconds. So far, the Ray-Ban Stories seem a lot like Snap's Spectacles, but they also include open-ear speakers for listening and a "three-microphone audio array to provide rich speech and sound transmission for calls and films." The microphones also allow for voice control of the glasses, allowing for a hands-free experience.