We Spent A Week With Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses: Are They Worth Your Money?

Woman with rayban meta smart glasses on
Jen Glantz Designworkz/Shutterstock

I first heard about the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses from my husband, Adam. The smart glasses let you make calls, send text messages, record videos, and snap photos, all while being hands-free. My husband encouraged me to buy them so we’d both be able to capture life around us easily. 

I bought a pair for $299 and spent a week using them to create content for Instagram and TikTok. Here’s what I liked and didn’t like about the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses.  

What Are Smart Glasses?

Smart glasses are a wearable technology that can carry out many of the functions you use your cell phone for. For example, these smart glasses can make phone calls, take photos, and record photos. Some smart glasses even offer augmented or mixed reality, which layers the real world with digital content. They offer AI assistance to tell you the weather or look up the nearest restaurant. 

Today, we’re taking an in-depth look at the Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses, which retail for $299. 

Ray-Ban's meta smart glasses sitting on a wooden desk
Jen Glantz

What Are Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses?

The first pair of Ray-Ban Meta glasses dropped in 2021. They were called Ray-Ban Stories and they let users take photos and up to 60-seconds worth of videos. But in September of 2023, Meta released an updated version of these smart glasses called Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses. 

The glasses offer similar, but improved features, to the first-generation pair. These glasses claim to have better audio, with a higher maximum volume and a more powerful microphone. The photo and video specs also got upgraded. The Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses have an ultra-wide 12 mega-pixel (MP) camera and shoot videos in 1080p resolution. These specs are similar to the camera on my iPhone 13 pro max, which also has a 12 MP camera but shoots video in 4K resolution, which is four times the resolution of 1080p. 

In addition to the new design being slimmer and more lightweight, it offers four hours of battery life. Meta also enabled AI which lets you speak to the glasses and ask for information or actions (ex: Please send the last picture I took to Adam). 

How Do You Use Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses?

When I unboxed the glasses, I was eager to put them on and start taking photos. But there are a few steps before you can start snapping pictures. First, you have to download the Meta View app and create an account.

Then you’ll sync the glasses with the app on your phone by pressing a small button on the back of the case. In total, the setup took me under five minutes and was easy to do. 

I have never used smart glasses before and found there was a slight learning curve to figure out how to access the features and use the Ray-Ban Meta glasses to their full potential.

I watched a few tutorials to get a better understanding of the glasses. It took me an hour to fully understand how to access the features. 

Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses - Writer Jen Glantz wearing Ray-Ban's meta smart glasses
Jen Glantz

What Features Come With Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses?

The Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses have a range of features that benefit content creators. I was excited to be able to take photos and record videos by just touching a button on the glasses and not having to take out my phone. 

The smart glasses also come with voice command and AI assistance so you can ask the glasses to take on tasks for you.

For example, I asked the glasses to call my mom and they dialed her for me. I asked the glasses to tell me what the weather would be tomorrow and it responded with those details in under 10 seconds. 

The glasses also let creators livestream on Meta’s platforms while staying entirely hands-free. While this isn’t a feature I plan to use, since I don’t livestream as a creator, it seemed beneficial for those who often showcase life in real time to their audience. 

Spending A Week With Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses

I used the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses for a week. Over that week, I captured a bank of content I’ll edit and post over the next month. I wore the glasses for around 20 minutes a day and used them for more than just content creation.

I made phone calls wearing the glasses, replied to incoming text messages, and used the AI-assistance feature to do research for me on the go by answering questions that I had. After spending time with the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses, here’s what I liked and didn’t like about them. 

What We Loved About Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses

1) Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses Look Trendy 

I was nervous about how I’d look walking around town wearing smart glasses. But the Ray-Ban Meta’s are stylish and chic. They look extremely similar to a classic pair of Ray-Ban Wayfarers.

Plus, the frames come in different shapes and colors. When I wore them around friends, I asked what they thought of my sunglasses and they had no idea they were smart glasses until I told them.

They are also lightweight and comfortable to wear. They weigh just a few grams more than traditional Ray-Ban glasses. I often forget they were smart glasses and had to remind myself to stop reaching for my phone when I was wearing glasses that could replace most of what I used my iPhone to do. 

For privacy reasons, I did like that it’s obvious when you are recording something or taking a photo. A small circle on the top of the frame lights up when you are taking a photo or recording video. That way, people around me always knew when the glasses were on or when they were just acting as sunglasses.

Someone holding up rayban meta smart glasses with their hand
Jen Glantz

2) These Smart Glasses Make It Easy To Capture Content On The Go

I often share real-time content with my audience that shows them behind the scenes of my day. Recording these clips on my phone often requires me to set up a tripod or ask someone to hold the camera. A big benefit of the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses was not having to worry about any of that.

Either myself or my husband would wear them and when we wanted to capture something, we’d hit the button on the glasses or say “Hey Meta, take a photo” and it would capture what you are looking at in the moment. I noticed that we were able to collect 50% more content than usual over the week just by having these smart glasses on. 

It was also seamless to upload the content from the glasses to the Meta View app and then save them to my camera roll. I did that every night to see what type of content we captured and sorted it into folders on my phone. 

What We Didn’t Love About Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses

1) They Can Only Record 60 Seconds Of Video At A Time

I wish that the Ray-Ban Meta glasses could record longer videos. After 60 seconds, the glasses stops recording. If you want to continue recording, you have to remember to press the button again and start a new clip.

When I film content, I often let the camera record for minutes at a time. Then I edit it all down later. It allows me to have more footage to choose from. It was annoying to have to keep pressing the button to start a new recording.

There were a few times we either forgot to do that. Other times I thought I had pressed the button, but hadn’t. In these instances, I ended up missing out on moments that we wanted to film for content.

2) My Phone Shoots Higher Quality Content 

Overall, I was surprised at how good the quality of my content was when I used the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses to take photos. The camera has similar specs to my iPhone 13 Max Pro (a 12 MP camera).

However, because you are taking photos with glasses, you do need to make sure you are standing still and have decent light. If not, the photos turned out blurry or too dark. 

I did think the video clips I filmed with the glasses turned out okay but they were not as good as what I’m able to shoot on my phone. The resolution on my iPhone is four times better than on the glasses so it was hard for them to compete. The video content created with the glasses seemed lower in quality and a bit blurry. 

Holding up the Ray-Ban's meta smart glasses official glasses case
Jen Glantz

Bottom line: The Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses are worth the price 

When comparing smart glasses on the market, the Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses are one of the lower-priced options. The $299 price tag seemed fair for the features included. Particularly if you are a content creator who shares photos and videos from your day-to-day life.

Wearing these smart glasses throughout the day allowed me to have more content to work with and edit together at the end of the week than I usually have.

I plan to use these glasses for photos and content for my Instagram stories. But when I want to shoot content for Reels and TikToks, I’ll still probably use my phone. Unless I’m too lazy to grab it from my pocket, set it up on a tripod, and hit record.

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