PRE-ORDER NOW: Meta announced its new Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses at the Meta Connect Event on Sept. 27. Pre-order them now for $299 at Ray-Ban or Meta.
Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses
Meta hopes that two years has been enough time for everyone to forgive the flop that was the Facebook Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses. The new Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses were announced alongside the Meta Quest 3 at the Meta Connect event on Sept. 27.
The new pair are available to preorder at Ray-Ban or Meta starting at $299 (or $329 for Polarized lenses, or more for prescription) and start shipping on Oct. 17. The $299 price tag is the same one that was seen on the first iteration of the Ray-Ban Stories in 2021. While the older smart shades were simply too expensive for too few features, the new ones are packed — and they won’t cost you more. Meta clearly wanted to push this generation of smart glasses past the “glorified way of taking pictures without getting your phone out” territory, baking in new capabilities like live streaming to social media, a higher-quality 12 MP camera, and better audio.
But the new feature that’ll bring the most variety of use to the smart glasses is the inclusion of Meta AI. From receiving an answer to smart home-y voice commands about the weather or measurement conversions to getting restaurant recommendations, the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses do offer some serious smarts at your beck and call.
Starting next year, a free software update will allow the embedded AI assistant to literally see what you’re seeing and hear what you’re hearing. Want to know what that huge old building you’re looking at is called? Ask Meta what it is. Can’t read the sign that’s offering crucial directions? Ask Meta to translate.
Meta wisely did not stray from the recognizable Ray-Ban style, which Mashable’s Alex Perry noted was one of the few good calls made on the 2021 pair. The 2023 pair is slightly slimmer and more lightweight, however, and comes in the classic Wayfarer design and a rounder Headliner style.
Even with all of these upgrades, you may still be asking yourself: Is any of this actually necessary? With a smartwatch attached to your wrist or a phone attached to your hand, maybe not. But don’t be surprised when you soon find yourself in a situation where a pair of smart glasses sounds really convenient.