11 things every Snapchat Spectacles owner should know

Get the most out of your new sunglasses.

Jason Cipriani Contributing Writer, ZDNet
Jason Cipriani is based out of beautiful Colorado and has been covering mobile technology news and reviewing the latest gadgets for the last six years. His work can also be found on sister site CNET in the How To section, as well as across several more online publications.
Jason Cipriani
3 min read
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Watch this: Spectacles are worth snapping up

Now that Snapchat Spectacles can be purchased online -- and you don't have to chase down a vending machine -- it's a lot easier to get your hands on a pair of Specs. If you picked up a pair, know this: There's a lot more to the sunglasses than you'd expect.

Here are 11 tips to help you get the most out of your fancy sunglasses.

Start by explaining the light circle

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Your friends are bound to be confused by the blinking circle each time you press record. It's a good idea to explain to those around you what it means, if nothing more than as a courtesy.

... and show them that it's actually a circle

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Arguably the most important thing to do when sharing videos from your Spectacles is teach your friends what to expect, and how to get the most from the videos you share.

You could try using Spectacles to record yourself, rotating your phone while watching a Spectacles video and explaining to your friends they, too, can rotate your videos.

Cut recording short

Spectacles will record 10-second videos by default. You can cut the recording time short, however, with a press-and-hold of the button before the time is up.

Or keep recording

Instead of cutting a video short, you can record up to 30 seconds by pressing the button to extend the time to 20, then 30 seconds. You don't have to wait until the end of the video, you can triple-press the button at the start to record a 30-second clip.

Why is the light blinking on the inside?

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You'll notice a light on the inside of the Spectacles when you're recording. It starts off solid, then blinks when there are two seconds of recording time left, giving you a chance to extend the recording.

Get HD video

If you have an iPhone, it'll take a couple of extra steps to get the HD versions of videos. When viewing your Specs recordings in the Snapchat app, tap Get HD near the top. When prompted, leave Snapchat and open the Settings app. Go to Wi-Fi and tap the Spectacles Wi-Fi network, then return to the Snapchat app.

Android users don't have to take these extra steps -- Snapchat will import HD videos by default.

Don't forget about settings

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From Snapchat's main screen, swipe down and tap the Settings icon, then select Spectacles. On this screen you can clear stored videos, view battery status, change the name, restart or reset your Spectacles.

Check battery life

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At any time you can lightly double-tap the left side of Spectacles, just below the recording button. The circle will light up, indicating how much juice is left.

Share with a friend

According to Snapchat, you can share your Spectacles with a friend without exposing your videos, and vice-versa, after your friend is done.

Before handing them over, make sure all videos are synced to your phone. Once that's done, your friend can pair Spectacles with his or her phone and Snapchat account.

When it's time to reclaim your Spectacles, you can pair them with your phone again.

I tested this and found I couldn't see the other user's videos, and she couldn't see mine. Impressive, if you ask me.

Export to share outside of Snapchat

When viewing a video, tap on the share button to save it to your Photos app or camera roll. Keep in mind, videos shared outside of Snapchat won't look or work in the same manner -- they will look like the video above (see it here if it doesn't appear).

You don't have to keep them on

You can record video with Spectacles while holding them in your hand or after you've put them on a table. Get creative, and have fun!

Fix a buggy pair of Spectacles

If your Spectacles are acting weird for whatever reason, you can reset them.

Erase all data (for selling or lending)

Whether you want to let a friend borrow your Specs or you plan to sell them, don't forget to clear the storage first.

Editors' note: This post was originally published December 20, 2016 and has since been updated to include new tips and reflect that Specs can now be purchased online.