Smart Glasses’ Near-Term Lose-Lose Situation
Earlier today, Snap resurrected Spectacles with version 2 for $150 (up from $130). The updated Spectacles have a slightly sleeker design, the ability to take pictures, new colors, optional prescription lenses, and water resistance.
Smart Glasses’ Near-Term Lose-Lose Situation. Over the next 3-5 years, we envision a lose-lose situation for smart glasses: the sleeker they get, the better they look; but the sleeker they get, the more discreet they are. Said another way, they are either too ugly for mass adoption, or too creepy for social acceptance. Beyond the early adoption period, we continue to believe smart glasses will be mainstream, driven by two factors: time and design. Social acceptance will come with time; as the technology and user experience improves, so too will social norms around wearables and smart glasses. Similarly, improved technology will enable design improvements that support mainstream adoption. We saw this with smartwatches and expect the pattern to repeat. Within 5 years we’ve gone from bulky fitness watches and wristbands to the Apple Watch, and that transition has driven mass consumer adoption. In time, and with design improvements, consumers will eventually become comfortable with the reality that everyone is not just carrying a camera in their pockets, but wearing one.
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