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Spectacles at first did not succeed, but Snap will try, try again, report says

McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

March 5, 2018


Snap Inc. is reportedly giving Spectacles, its camera-equipped sunglasses, at least two more tries.

The Venice maker of the video messaging app Snapchat is working on two new versions of the glasses to improve upon its poorly selling original version, according to the video news outlet Cheddar.

Snap declined to comment.

One of the new versions is reportedly expected to be released in the fall and will look similar to the original pair, but will be offered in different colors and boast higher performance.

The other version, reportedly slated for 2019, is a more sophisticated version of the glasses. The company is considering adding two cameras to produce 3-D effects and built-in GPS, which could raise prices to about $300, more than double Spectacles’ standard price.

Spectacles were released in 2016. Snap sold about 150,000 pairs, well below company expectations. Snap had to write down $40 million in costs associated with the excess inventory in 2017.

Snap’s chief executive, Evan Spiegel, is determined to succeed in hardware given the potential for augmented reality to boost interest in Snapchat.

Spectacles are a product of Snap Lab, the company’s hardware division. The lab was hit with layoffs and leadership changes last year.

In addition to Spectacles, Cheddar reported Snap had reached out to eyewear manufacturers Luxottica and Warby Parker about partnerships.