Announced Snap this week on the next phase of its push for augmented reality, with the launch of the first version of its Spectacles smart glasses to fully support augmented reality.
Although launch is not the correct term, this new and updated version of Spectacles, which is able to overlay digital graphics across a person’s real world, will not be available to the public.
But it is being distributed instead to the makers of augmented reality, who are primarily collaborating with Snapchat to help with the next phase of development.
The announcement is a big step forward for the use of augmented reality, and it appears to be a step ahead of bigger players, such as Apple and Facebook, who are also developing their own augmented reality glasses.
But for Snap, that’s something that’s been in development for years, dating back to the initial launch of Spectacles in 2016.
Around the time the company released Spectacles, it also changed the description of the company, describing itself as a camera company rather than a social media app.
At the time, Snap seemed to be doing this to avoid comparisons to Facebook or Twitter, which had been under fire for failing to grow at a rate comparable to the social network.
But the change served an important purpose in realigning what Snap was aiming to achieve, which, until then, signaled the advanced development of its augmented reality tools.
Spectacles appear to be purpose-built, and it appears that the company was forced to release its camera-equipped glasses very early, before it could build the required augmented reality technology.
But Snap has been working on it, as shortly after the launch of the first version of Spectacles, the company established a new R&D facility in China near where the Spectacles were assembled, giving it the opportunity to develop its own augmented reality tools in secret, out of sight. Intruders.
Snap also launched World Lenses a few months after the release of Spectacles, which once again signaled the next phase of augmented reality development.
The company had the tools to create immersive digital overlays in real-world environments, and the device was for sale, which was received with great fanfare.
And she only needed to combine the two elements together, and this combination is clearly much more difficult in practice than what Snap seemed to expect.
And the initial version of the Spectacles ended up not meeting Snap’s sales expectations, ending up with hundreds of thousands of unsold units.
This was coupled with the increasing success of Instagram stories, which were a duplicate of the special Snapchat stories feature, and seemed to pose a real threat to the very existence of the company, with rising debts and slowing user growth, and the company seems to have gambled a lot about the future of augmented reality to help lift it to the next stage.
This led to a major refocusing of the company, and in previous years Snap was able to reorganize itself more broadly around a more specific and specialized use-case in contacting close friends and providing a more privacy-focused approach to messaging.
And Snap was able to redevelop its platform, bypassing the problems left by Facebook versions of its main feature, and consolidating its platform, which also saw explosive growth when it updated its Android app in 2019.
Augmented reality has always been its main strength, as it was the Snapchat lenses that first brought many people to the app to try it, and they remain the main driver.
Virtual reality is also a huge advance, with great potential to build fully immersive digital worlds, augmented reality can complement your daily life, and it can enhance your real-world experience through useful prompts and indications, along with interactive games, graphics and more.
We are now in the midst of the next major transformation to augmented reality, and the next big development for Snap, and this is its prime opportunity to become a much bigger player in the market.
Snap is investing heavily in this area, acquiring FitAnalytics for its experimental AR tools, Pixel8Earth for expanding augmented reality maps, and WaveOptics for augmented reality displays that are a key component of the new Spectacles.
Snap is trying to make itself synonymous with augmented reality technology, and this is a great opportunity for the company, and it is working to achieve it and make it a reality.
It may not seem like it yet, but augmented reality will soon become a popular component of many of your daily interactions, and if Snap can do it right, it will also play a major role in the process.
Topics of interest to the reader