Tech Digest daily round up: Snap announces AR Spectacles – but you can’t buy them!


Snap’s new Spectacles glasses are its most ambitious yet. But there’s a big catch: you can’t buy them. On Thursday, Snap CEO Evan Spiegel unveiled the company’s first true augmented reality glasses, technology that he and rivals like Facebook think will one day be as ubiquitous as mobile phones. A demo showed virtual butterflies fluttering over colorful plants and landing in Spiegel’s extended hand. The new Spectacles have dual waveguide displays capable of superimposing AR effects made with Snapchat’s software tools. The frame features four built-in microphones, two stereo speakers, and a built-in touchpad. Front-facing cameras help the glasses detect objects and surfaces you’re looking at so that graphics more naturally interact with the world around you. These Spectacles, however, aren’t ready for the mass market. Unlike past models, Snap isn’t selling them. Instead, it’s giving them directly to an undisclosed number of AR effects creators through an application program online. The Verge 

Elon Musk says customer orders of the Tesla Model S Plaid will start arriving soon. Tesla will hold its delivery event on 3 June at its California factory, the chief executive said. He is also said that the new version of the Model S will be the “fastest production car ever”. “0 to 60mph in under two secs,” he wrote in the announcement on Twitter. If the claim is true, the new version of the Model S – a family saloon car – would be able to accelerate more quickly than any other production car, even much sportier-looking vehicles. The Model S Plaid will be an even more powerful version of Tesla’s famous large saloon. It is intended to be faster even than the “Ludicrous” model, which is already among the quickest vehicles in production. Independent 

And talking of Elon Musk…he is also wooing Moscow with potential plans to build “a new Tesla factory in Russia, pitting it against the North of England in courting the electric carmaker for its next manufacturing base,” claims The Telegraph. He spoke warmly of Russia at a Kremlin-sponsored online event for students, extolled its space programme and hinted at building a factory there. “I think we’re close to establishing a Tesla presence in Russia, and I think it would be great. Over time, we will look to have factories in other parts of the world, potentially Russia at some point,” Mr Musk said. While Tesla’s main manufacturing base is in the US, it also has a “gigafactory” in China and is building a site in Berlin that will create up to 10,000 jobs. 

Eight years after the untimely demise of Google Reader, Google is embracing RSS again. The company is testing a “Follow” button for Chrome that lets you keep up with your favorite sites on the web browser. In the coming weeks, users of the Chrome Canary channel for developers should start seeing the new feature on Android. Google’s Adrienne Porter Felt tweeted that the follow feed is based on RSS and that the company is building it to address a “user need.” Alas, the announcement was met with pushback and sarcasm from those still pining over Google Reader. In a curt reply, one Twitter user said: “so, it’s google reader, but shittier.” Another blamed Google for trying “to kill rss hype 15 years back, but when it couldn’t, it reused it!” While news aggregator Feedly shared a tongue-in-cheek response, tweeting: “great news, we’re excited!” Others, however, welcomed the news by sharing constructive feedback and requesting an iOS version. Engadget

Dating app Tinder will detect abusive messages and ask the writer to stop and think before sending them, in an effort to tackle harassment. The automated system will learn to detect “harmful language” from messages reported by users. Tinder said the “Are you sure?” system had “reduced inappropriate language in messages sent” in trials by about 10%. Instagram and Twitter already use similar systems to detect abusive comments and tweets. Instagram asks users “are you sure you want to post this?” if its systems spot bullying or harassment in photo comments. BBC 

Chris Price
For latest tech stories go to