Snapchat Spectacles Are Fetching $1,000 Or More on Ebay

November 12, 2016, 3:20 AM UTC
Courtesy of Snap, Inc.

In an early sign of high demand, sci-fi sunglasses from the parent company of Snapchat are selling for markups of 700% or more on eBay.

The new Spectacles, stylish glasses that can record 10-second video snippets, cost $129.99 at retail from a handful of vending machines in what is a limited debut. So, naturally, some of the enterprising souls who’ve tracked down the location of the vending machines, known as Snapbots, are reselling the glasses on eBay.

Just over 70 sales have been completed since the glasses started appearing on the online marketplace. The prices on successful auctions range from $500 to as much as $2,000 for a single pair glasses, with most going for $800 to $1,000.

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Spectacles come in a handful of different colors, but those sold so far are mostly black. Sellers seem to be guessing that other colors will be in high demand—several live auctions are offering the teal color for upwards of $1,500.

There’s another odd offer, as well. An Australia-based Snapchat aficionado, Gun Hudson, has posted an eBay listing offering to trade a flight to Australia for a pair of Spectacles. With a short-term flight from San Francisco to Sydney running upwards of $1,400, he’d be paying just slightly above the going rate for the glasses.

For more on trendy wearables, watch our video.

When a limited-release product shows this much life on the secondary market, it can be a good index of consumer demand. (The same thing happened with Nintendo’s NES Classic mini-console, which debuted this week and sold out quickly before showing up for resale at huge markups). There’s no guarantee that appetite will be long-lived, but it’s a positive early sign that Spectacles might succeed in a category where others have struggled.

Most notably, Google’s Glass smart glasses created a big cultural splash when they debuted in 2012, but they were ultimately too pricey and awkward, and were at least temporary pulled from the market early last year. Spectacles are only superficially similar to Glass, which were essentially a full-fledged face-mounted computer. But the more modest, fun, and fashion-oriented pitch from Snap Inc., Snapchat’s parent company, seems to have connected.

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