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Meta’s Ray-Ban stories have launched in a few more countries this week, and they will be getting additional colour options and the ability to record longer videos. This follows a recent software update with allowed users to send texts, control calls and use voice to control media playback.
The smart glasses were released last September and they come with two of cameras built-in, a microphone and a speaker. At launch Zuckerberg has said that the glasses will be able to do some “pretty neat things”. And Meta has been adding more functionality since the original unveiling.
The December firmware update slapped on a bunch of hands-free features. This includes the ability to use Ray-Ban Stories to send text and voice calls over Messenger, and have messages read outloud.
Control of music playback was also added to the package thanks to that update. It allows wearers to use their voice to skip to the next song, adjust the volume of audio, pause and resume a song or podcast. For example, saying “Hey Facebook, next” will skip to the next song. Other things you can do include asking the assistant for the battery life status.
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Ray Bay Stories do not have any health or fitness functionality built in. This is more about smart features and social media integration.
To this end they have a pair of front-facing cameras for photos. A long tap on the only physical button takes a high res photo, a short tap a low res photo. You can also take videos that last up to 30 seconds. The idea is to allow users to share these to their social media contacts via the accompanying smartphone app.
Meta announced today that users will, from early April, be able to record 60 second videos. They will be able to adjust to recording time in the Facebook View app and choose between the long and short option.
The company is slowly widening the European distribution. Ray-Ban Stories were made available in Austria, Belgium and Spain this week and there are plans for a French debut next month. To support the takeup in Europe, the specs will be getting voice commands in French and Italian.
Customers will also be able to choose in April from four more colour options and Transition lens combinations. This includes a black Round or Wayfarer frames with gray or brown lenses. This will bump the number of different designs of the $299 specs from 20 to 28.
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