It's 2023 and I'm still waiting for my flying car or a robotic handyman that can do all the things I don't want to do. In the meantime I'll have to be content with "smart sunglasses" powered by AI, capable of recording photos, videos, even live streaming.

Welcome to Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses, which doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, but the capabilities are intriguing. According to PC Magazine a built-in 12MP camera and the ability to record videos up to 1 minute at 1080p.

In addition, you'll be able to do hands-free live streaming for up to 30 minutes at a time, with a capture LED that "lets others know when you’re capturing content or going live," Meta says. For live-streaming, you'll need a 5G cellular connection or strong Wi-Fi. So people nearby will know when you're streaming. Uh huh. What can go wrong there?

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Credit: Ray-Ban
Credit: Ray-Ban
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According to Meta: "You can now livestream from the glasses to Facebook or Instagram, and use “Hey Meta” to engage with Meta AI, our advanced conversational assistant, just by using your voice."

Did I mention you don't have to fumble with your smartphone when you're making a call? Meta explains: "We have all-new custom designed speakers with extended bass, higher maximum volume, and improved directional audio that provides reduced audio leakage for improved calls, music, and podcasts — even in noisy or windy environments. You can use your voice to make calls and send messages on WhatsApp, Messenger and SMS, completely hands-free." Just make sure you download the app first.

Wait, I can listen to KOOL101.7 on my fancy sunglasses? Who knew?

Credit: Meta
Credit: Meta
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But wait, there's more. Meta is incorporating artificial intelligence, so by saying "Hey Meta" you can ask questions and get real-time answers, in English, French or Italian. Not sure what you're staring at or how to get home? Just ask your sunglasses. OK, sounds pretty cool. What's the downside - are these crazy expensive?

Credit: Ray-Ban
Credit: Ray-Ban
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Once upon a time Google Glass had promise, but it flopped in the marketplace. Battery life was too short and they retailed for a whopping $1500.

The price-point has come way down. According to PC Magazine: "Preorders for both are available at Meta's shop or Ray-Ban's website for $299.99, the same price as the previous generation. They can also be fitted with prescription lenses as needed. Orders should start shipping Oct. 23."

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Credit: Ray-Ban
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The shades come in 150 different styles and colors and are waterproof in a light rain. Note to self: no live streaming during a flood. But for $299 I can almost imagine myself using these, especially on a trip and on a sunny day when I don't look too creepy wearing sunglasses.

Would you consider these? Maybe wait for more reviews to come in? I'm keeping an open mind. Look, you can easily blow a few hundred bucks on regular, generic Ray-Ban sunglasses, but the ability to make hands-free calls, record video, stream and ask questions (in Italian?)

Connected watches are so 2014. Smart sunglasses are the next big thing.

Or are they? Stay tuned.

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Gallery Credit: Jessica Williams