Snapchat is here to fight everyone who still thinks its platform is just for selfies and disappearing nudes. It’s a cool, interesting way to communicate the world around you and it’s just launched a new feature to prove it.
Dubbed “World Lenses,” the feature consists of 3D animations for the rear-facing camera to bring the extra to an ordinary world.
Users using the rear camera need only tap on the screen once and the familiar menu of filters appears. As of writing, filters include a discoing mushroom, 3D phrases of the “meh,” “YOLO,” and “STFU” calibre, an emoji rainbow and rain cloud, and your standard rear-facing sparkles.
The lenses are all dealt with as if they exist in the real world. Once you’ve positioned your filter, walking towards it makes it bigger and walking away makes it smaller. Walking around them provides a near-seamless 360 view.
The new Snapchat lenses (or filters) for rear-facing cameras aren’t yet available
The filters will reportedly be changed daily, and they aren’t all available globally yet.
“At the moment, Text Lenses are only available in a few specific places. They should be expanding other other areas soon, though!” Snapchat writes, but it’s unclear whether it means the 3D phrases or customisable text options.
And while the feature itself is adorable, the timing of the announcement is pretty sneaky.
Yesterday, Facebook held its F8 developer conference, where it boasted it was “making the camera the first augmented reality platform.” Of course, Snapchat was the first to delve into the augmented reality of cameras, long before Facebook copied its features onto every app it has its hands on.
While Facebook is doing the talking, it seems Snapchat is doing the walking.