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Snap unveils new Spectacles AR glasses that you won't be able to buy

Credit: Snap

Snap, Inc. has unveiled its latest pair of augmented reality glasses, but this time around, the company is targeting developers instead of consumers.

The new Spectacles will allow users to apply lenses onto real-world environments. That's unlike previous iterations of Snap's Spectacles, which didn't offer any actual holographic capabilities.

Also unlike past Spectacles, the fourth-generation version won't actually be for sale. They're aimed at developers, but even developers won't be able to purchase them. Instead, they'll have to apply for a pair.

On the specification side, the new Spectacles will feature 3D waveguide displays, 2,000 nits of brightness, and support for Snapchat's AR Lenses. They'll pack two RGB cameras and four microphones, as well. The battery only lasts about 30 minutes, however.

The goal, according to Snapchat, is to entice creators to craft new AR effects. In the company's words, it wants developers to "explore new ways to fuse fun and utility through immersive AR." It's a new angle for the company, which largely failed to convince consumers to purchase previous Spectacles. The original Snapchat glasses sold only 220,000 units in total.

Alongside the new Spectacles, Snapchat also launched a new iOS video editing app dubbed Story Studio. The new app will allow content creators to edit Snapchat videos, and appears to be a reaction to popular short-form clip platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels.

Apple is thought to be working on its own augmented reality glasses, potentially under the moniker of "Apple Glass." Those glasses are expected to pair to an iPhone and overlay information onto real-world environments. The company is also rumored to be working on a mixed-reality headset that could feature a visor-like design and ultra-high-resolution 8K displays.

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