As product launches go, Snapchat Spectacles didn’t exactly set the world alight.
The much-hyped initial launch back in 2016 promised much but ultimately failed to deliver. Thousands lined up to purchase their $129 Spectacles from bright yellow vending machines that popped up randomly across America.
Snap moved the Minion-like vending machine around the country, quietly tweeting an image of the machine without explanation when it arrived in a new spot. People skipped school and work in an effort to secure a pair, and it looked like the company was onto a winner.
But Snap announced recently that it had lost $40 million on a product that generated a great deal of attention but evidently failed to capture consumer imagination.
Only 150,000 pairs of the camera-containing glasses were sold, leaving hundreds of thousands more sat on warehouse pallets never to see the light of day.
“Unfortunately, we misjudged strong early demand for Spectacles and purchased more inventory than we now anticipate being able to sell,” Snap CFO Drew Vollero said.
“Moving forward, we will continue to be in the market place with Spectacles and expect modest revenue from the product line.”
>> READ MORE: Snapchat Spectacles: What do they mean for marketers? <<
According to Cheddar, the company hasn’t been scarred by its experience to date and intends to get straight back in the saddle. Spectacles 2.0 are touted for launch later in 2018, with an even more ambitious two-camera third version following in 2019.
The second edition will reportedly be water resistant and available in a range of new colors. It will also focus on performance improvements and bug fixes rather than dramatic changes.
It’s worth remembering that Snap describes itself as a ‘camera company’, so perhaps it’s no surprise that the company is refusing to give up on its first hardware launch.