LAS VEGAS — People love the next trendy thing. Until they don’t.
Just off the Strip in Las Vegas, Snap is clinging to the hope that people will still want to slap on a pair of $129 colored Spectacles so they can shoot video with their face.
But the cute yellow Snapbot vending machine — which created so much strategically placed hype in Seattle and other cities for months last year — is now gone. In its place, at least on the Linq Promenade, is a small yellow, wheeled cart which may have lived a previous life dispensing snacks at a market.
Previous reports have said that Snap way overestimated potential demand for the video sunglasses, with much of the product sitting unsold in warehouses.
And the telling part this week, on nights when thousands of people strolled past to nearby bars and restaurants, is that there were no lines to buy Spectacles.
But 20 feet away there were lines.
Google turned into the king of the new giant vending machine this week for CES. The tech giant’s two-story-tall Hey Google machines are all over town, filled with colored balls that, when spit out, allow visitors to win prizes such as Google Home Mini, Nest thermostats and more.
Google Assistants dressed in white jumpsuits and colorful hats and sneakers whipped up the hysteria and kept long lines of people engaged, because … free stuff.
Steps away on the Promenade, with no line and a cart full of bright sunglasses, it was a decidedly more low-key Spectacle. Especially for an event that thrives on creating one.