We live in a digital age with the entire world at our fingertips. Between smartphones, smartwatches and tablets, we can send emails on our daily commute, effortlessly communicate with friends in another country or keep a mobile wallet on our wrist. While these technological advancements certainly make some tasks simpler, additional devices can be clunky to carry around from one adventure to the next. And what if you don’t have extra hands but want to take a photo? Well, that’s where Ray-Ban Stories come into play. Whether you’re heading off to your next fall hike or looking for holiday gift ideas, these smart glasses are the perfect way to capture hands-free photos.
Released in late 2021, Ray-Ban Stories remain one of the best smart glasses available, with the ability to capture photos and videos entirely hands-free. They were created as a collaboration between EssilorLuxottica and Meta Platforms, better known as Ray-Ban and Facebook. With the leading companies behind sunglasses and social media, Ray-Ban Stories perfectly combine stylish eyewear and innovative technology. All users need the View app, as well as a valid Facebook account to utilize all of the features.
Ray-Ban stories can take pictures and videos up to 60 seconds using the dual 5-megapixel cameras located on the exterior side of the lenses. Users don’t have to worry about lighting settings, as the cameras automatically adjust to the light around them. A touchpad is located on the right temple and allows you to take videos by touching or take photos by touching and holding. However, you can also say, “Hey Facebook, take a photo,” or “Hey Facebook, take a video,” to capture footage completely hands-free. It has 4 megabytes of storage and all content is automatically stored on your View app using Bluetooth.
With three built-in microphones and two speakers on either side of your head, the sound quality is designed to be clear and rich when listening or recording audio. The touchpad also allows you to control the volume, pause or skip a song. In addition, it utilizes open-ear speakers so that sounds come through clearly for you, but are muted to others. Open ear speakers are ideal for listening to music while still being aware of your surroundings.
After taking a picture or shooting a video, everything is uploaded to the Facebook View app. You can edit images and videos on the app before deciding to share them on various social media platforms or text.
A short battery life can really make or break your entire experience. For instance, if you want to capture pictures and videos on a long hike, smart glasses with a two-hour battery life might die before making it to the end of a hike.
While the primary function of smart glasses is generally their video or audio capabilities, they’re still useful as sunglasses or blue-light-blocking glasses. So, you’ll want to be sure you love the style and that they’re comfortable to wear for long periods.
If you’re looking for a pair of smart glasses for active adventures, having a pair that’s water-resistant is helpful. While you can’t go swimming with smart glasses, some are suitable to wear in light rain or when sweating.
Not only do these glasses feature dual 5-megapixel cameras, but they also automatically adjust to the light for high-resolution photos and videos. This classic shape comes in 11 frame and lens color combinations, including brown frames, gold lenses or clear blue light glasses. The lenses have a width of 53 millimeters.
For a slightly square silhouette, opt for the meteor style, which also comes in various color combinations. This style features lenses that are 51mm wide and a high bridge fit. Plus, they’re also available with prescription lenses through certain retailers.
With 48mm-width lenses and a rounded shape, these smart glasses should be a better fit for those with smaller faces who still want that classic high bridge fit. These are also available in a variety of colors to match anyone’s personal style.
For a similar option that features two high-definition cameras and four microphones to capture photos and videos with audio, these smart glasses made by Snapchat are an excellent choice. They give users the option to use a ton of 3D effects on Snapchat and send them anywhere or create prints. A leather charging case is also included.
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These smart glasses can make calls, play audiobooks, add a task to the to-do list or control your smart home hands-free with Alexa. They utilize open-ear audio with auto volume that directs sound to the ears while simultaneously minimizing what others hear and adjusting the volume to the environment.
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While there’s no camera option, these smart glasses are fitted with built-in Bose speakers that produce rich sound using open-ear audio. Plus, a built-in microphone allows for clear calls and access to a phone’s built-in assistant. Battery life is about 3.5 hours while streaming or 12 hours on standby, and it takes only two hours to charge.
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For lens versatility without buying a whole new pair of glasses, these smart glasses come with a pair of polarized lenses and blue-light-filter lenses that switch out effortlessly. With more than five hours of life with power conservation when not in use, they should last for most of a workday or a gaming session.
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These frames feature four speakers and a custom audio processor that delivers clear sound to the space around the ears while letting you maintain awareness of all surroundings. They also have dual microphones for phone calls and a privacy mode that automatically activates to keep other people from overhearing.
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Bre Richey writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.