Facebook/Ray-Ban Stories smartglasses: Everything you need to know

Even Ray-Ban admits these are first-generation.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Following a last-minute leak, Ray-Ban has unveiled its new Stories smart sunglasses, a hardware project in partnership with Facebook.

Ray-Ban describes these as a "new way to capture, share and listen." They're also described as the company's "first generation of smart sunglasses and eyeglasses."

Here's what you need to know.

On the front are a pair of 5MP cameras capable of taking 2592x1944 pixels photos, and 1184x1184 pixels video at 30 frames per second.

Ray-Ban Stories camera

Storage capacity is enough for around thirty 30-second video clips or 500 photos.

In order to give those in the vicinity a heads-up that they are being photographed or videoed, there's an LED that lights up on the front.

Users are given feedback on battery status and what the glasses are doing by a color-changing LED.

Open-ear speakers and surround-sound microphones are built into the arms of the glasses for music playback and making and receiving calls.

The cameras can be voice-controlled, allowing hands-free activation. There's also a touchpad on the side of the smartglasses that allows music to the played/paused, and for photos and video to the captured. The touchpad also doubles as a volume control and a way to skip tracks.

The Stories smartglasses are wirelessly charged when they are placed in the portable charging case.

Ray-Ban Stories charging case

Glasses take about an hour to charge and will offer around 6 hours of sporadic use. The charging case can recharge the smartglasses three times.

Glasses are available in three styles -- Wayfarer, Round, and Meteor -- and six colors, and come with clear lenses (prescription or non-corrective) or sun lenses.

Voice control and integration by a Facebook View app that integrates with Instagram, Facebook and, WhatsApp. Connectivity is handled by Wi-Fi (802.11 Ac, 2.45/5 GHz) and  Bluetooth 5.0, and they are compatible with Android 8.1 and above or IOS 13 and above.

Prices start at $299.

Thoughts? Are Ray-Ban Stories a big hit, or a huge miss along the lines of the Snap Spectacles?

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