Facebook's smart glasses have arrived: they're called Ray-Ban Stories and are mainly for sharing photos and videos on Instagram. No augmented reality.
Facebook and Ray-Ban have presented the fruit of their collaboration, announced several months ago: they are called Ray-Ban Stories and, in practice, are the smart glasses of Facebook. Unlike what was initially expected from the countless rumors circulated especially in recent weeks, however, these are not smart glasses dedicated to augmented reality, but glasses "all social"
From a technical point of view, in fact, not much changes between Ray-Ban Stories and other smart glasses already on the market, such as Huawei Gentle Monster II. These glasses appear normal, but with two cameras, two speakers and microphones itegrated, which can be controlled by both touch and voice and that have mainly one purpose: to quickly record short videos to share on Facebook or, better yet, to use as Instagram Stories. The name, in fact, says a lot about the typical buyer of this product: young, style-conscious and with a huge desire to share their lives on social media. Ray-Ban Stories are probably the glasses for him.
Ray-Ban Stories: how they're made
At first glance, it's hard to tell Ray-Ban Stories from a normal pair of Ray-Ban glasses. If you pay attention, however, you'll notice the two 5 MP cameras built into the edges of the lenses and the two small LEDs that will only activate when the glasses are recording, to alert those around you. The same cameras can also take photos, as well as shoot video.
The first privacy controversy has already arisen, with several people pointing out that just two pieces of tape are enough to turn the Ray-Ban Stories into a great spy tool.
To activate the Ray-Ban Stories there are two ways: the first is to touch the touch surface on the temples, the second is to speak the voice commands. At the moment, the Facebook voice assistant used in this device only recognizes commands in English.
From the same touch surface you can, via gestures, control music playback or manage calls: the Ray-Ban Stories, in fact, work only if they are paired via Bluetooth to a smartphone with the new Facebook View app, available for iOS and Android. Audio playback is instead entrusted to two speakers located on the inside of the temples.
The Facebook View app, in addition to managing the glasses, is used to decide on which social networks to share the recorded clips, which cannot exceed 30 seconds in duration. The first choice is the social networks of the Facebook group, of course.
Ray-Ban Stories: how much they cost
Ray-Ban Stories are already on the market in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland, Italy and the United Kingdom. Italy, the only non-English speaking country in the group, is present mainly because Ray-Ban is a brand of the Italian luxury multinational EssilorLuxottica.
The smart glasses are available with three different types of frames (Round, Wayfarer and Meteor, in blue, brown, black and green) and with transparent or colored lenses (green, brown, polarized dark blue and Transitions). The starting price is 329 euros and availability is almost immediate: buying them today the estimated delivery is for September 15.