Meta, the parent company of Facebook, develops augmented reality glasses. But its technology not being ready yet, the group first launched connected glasses, without augmented reality, in partnership with Ray-Ban: Ray-Ban Stories.
This product was formalized in 2021 and was initially launched in a few countries, including the USA. And soon, Meta glasses will also be available in France.
The announcement was just made in a company blog post. The Ray-Ban Stories will be available in Spain, Austria and Belgium from March 17. Then, the product will also arrive in France on April 14. The starting price will be 329 euros.
What are Meta’s Ray-Ban Stories for?
As mentioned above, Ray-Ban Stories are not augmented reality glasses, but simple connected glasses. Like Snapchat’s first Spectacle glasses, this product is primarily used for shooting first-person video, which can then be shared on social media.
The Ray-Ban Stories are equipped with a pair of 5 megapixel sensors for filming or photography. Recording videos or taking photos is initiated either with voice commands or by pressing a physical button. You can also use these glasses to make calls, since the product is equipped with microphones and speakers.
In April, when the Ray-Ban Stories will be available in France, Meta will also provide some updates. For example, the duration limit for recorded videos will increase from 30 seconds to 60 seconds. It will be possible to use voice commands in French and the mobile application that accompanies the gadget will also be available in French.
It is from this application that the user manages the images captured by the Ray-Ban Stories, before sharing them on Facebook, Twitter, Instgaram, or another social network.
Regarding privacy, Meta clarifies that the group does not access the data unless it is shared, and that the information on the separate application is not used for advertising purposes.
“Your content is not shared on social media without permission, and you will need to use the capture button on your glasses or a voice command to take a photo or video”, explains the company. On the other hand, when you need absolute discretion, you have the option to turn everything off using a physical Off button. Finally, so that these glasses are not used to spy on people, these have an LED light that lights up during recordings.
Note that this product is only a first step for Meta, whose objective is to develop AR glasses. The project is important for the group, because Mark Zuckerberg is personally convinced that augmented reality glasses will replace smartphones within a few years. In addition, it should be noted that Meta is also developing a connected watch.