In an enterprising move, Snapchat has signaled its intent to be more than a company with a successful app under its belt, by venturing into the hardware territory, whilst also renaming itself ‘Snap Inc’.
It is highly unlikely that the company will change the name of its wildly popular and successful maiden app that continues to dominate the younger demographic of mobile phone users across the world. The ephemeral photo-sharing apps is the most widely used social media app by teenagers and young adults in the United States, leaving behind Facebook in the second place.
With increasing competition and strategic lunges made towards it by Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook and its sibling platform, Instagram – Snapchat is compelled to explore and expand their horizons to sustain itself in the long run.
Vergence, a startup that develops wearable hardware, was acquired by Snapchat back in 2014 for a paltry sum of $15million, sparking off speculative assumptions all over Silicon Valley. A leaked online video, which has since been taken down, appears to confirm the market speculation that Snap Inc. is definitely releasing Spectacles.
$15million is paltry considering, Snap Inc. stands to make a much more significant amount of money if Spectacles clicks with their audience.
Snapchat (Oh. Apologies), Snap Inc. is indeed planning release Spectacles, a better thought out, relevant, stylish and more applicable version (judging by first appearances) of Google Glass, that is more suited to Snapchat’s features.
This isn’t just Snap Inc. branching out and innovating, but a strategic business maneuver that challenges Facebook directly. Since acquiring Oculus back in 2014 for a whopping $2 billion, Facebook has been working towards a similar product, but there haven’t been any reports of fruition, yet.
On the other hand, Snap Inc. looks to have a finished product that they plan on selling to a limited number of users this fall as reported by The Wall Street Journal.
Tapping a button near the hinge on the Spectacle enables a user to record up to 10 seconds of video from their vantage point, and at the same time being an extremely stylish piece of eye wear! It will be available in three colors and one size; black, teal, and coral.
Snapchat, now Snap Inc. CEO, Evan Spiegel demostrating Spectacles. Photo : Karl Lagerfeld for WSJ. Magazine.
If Snap Inc. beats Facebook to market with Spectacles, Mark Zuckerberg faces an increasing risk of being left red faced, for a company with superior resources and a much larger team to finish as also-ran.
Not only that, Snap Inc. will be absolutely relishing this sweet revenge, as just this year the company saw Facebook owned Instagram unapologetically incorporate Stories, a Snapchat exclusive feature into their own core app.
The next few months promise to be extremely entertaining for Silicon Valley as the news about Spectacles impending release will have the Facebook team working round the clock.
Let us watch how this competition unfolds.