In an unmarked building on a quiet side street just off the beach
in Venice, California, 26-year-old Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel
stands in a small conference room. He’s draped a towel over a
mysterious object sitting on a table. He is eager to the point of
“You wanna see it?” he asks, grinning widely. There’s drama in
this reveal: I’m about to join an exceedingly small circle of
people whom Spiegel has shown the object to. As he lifts the
towel, he breaks into a delighted laugh. “Boom!”
What initially appears to be a normal pair of sunglasses turns out
to be Spectacles, the first hardware product from Snap Inc., as
the firm has been newly christened (Spiegel is refreshing the
company name because its offerings now go beyond the Snapchat
app). When you slip Spectacles on and tap a button near the hinge,
it records up to 10 seconds of video from your first-person
vantage. Each new tap records another clip.
Uh, those do not appear to be a “normal pair of sunglasses”.