Camera-enabled Snapchat Spectacles launched in UK

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Spectacles, the camera-enabled glasses that connect with Snapchat, have launched in the UK for the first time.

The £130 sunglasses record 10-second video clips which are then sent to the user's Snapchat account, where they can be shared with friends.

The glasses, which launched in the US in November, are the first piece of hardware built by Snapchat's parent company, Snap Inc.

They will be sold online as well as from bright yellow vending machines, known as Snapbots, which move to a new location each day.

After their launch in the US, long queues at Snapbots were reported, while pairs were also listed on eBay for over 1,000 US dollars (£775) as demand soared.

It is estimated the company has sold more than 60,000 pairs of Spectacles in the US so far, and chief executive Evan Spiegel has said the company will "keep experimenting" with hardware products.

The tech giant has now placed Snapbots in London, Paris, Berlin, Barcelona and Venice to mark the European launch, and said more would appear in other locations in the UK and Europe during the summer.

Spectacles capture video in a wide-angled, circular format designed to mimic the field of vision captured by the human eye.

They are the first major smartglasses product since Google's ill-fated Glass augmented reality eyewear, which launched in 2014 and enabled users to read messages and get directions as well as take photos.

Google withdrew Glass from sale in early 2015 after concerns were raised over privacy and safety.

The firm is said to be working on a new version of the device.

The Snapchat app has around 166 million daily active users, with more than 55 million in Europe.

It says more than three billion snaps are captured with its in-app camera every day.