Snap wants to be a hardware company, although it can't sell hardware.
Last year, Snap, the company behind Snapchat, launched Spectacles, a pair of smart glasses that allowed users to capture photos and videos that could then be uploaded online through the Snapchat app. They were extremely popular at first, but then, something happened... And, well, have you ever actually seen someone wearing a pair?
According to The Information, Snap ordered “hundreds of thousands” of units and parts after the holidays last year, and apparently, they haven't sold. The company then opened up sales, so you didn't have to go to a random kiosk at some pop-up location to buy them, but that still didn't encourage its users and others from buying a pair.
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Now, those units are collecting dust somewhere. There are no firm figures available if you want to know how many Spectacles have been sold to date, but earlier this month, Evan Spiegel, the CEO of Snapchat, put the number at around "150,000" units, which sounds dismal when compared to the hundreds of thousands of unsold ones.
Here's the thing, though: TechCrunch reported that, at a conference in early October, Spiegel talked about how Snapchat thinks hardware will be important for the company in the future, and that's why it is tackling it now: “If we believe it’s going to be important in a decade, we don’t want to be starting a decade from now," he said.
Snap has a 150-person hardware team, The Information reported.