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Snapchat goes big on Originals

Snapchat owner Snap Inc has announced a new slate of Snap Originals, as well as new augmented reality features.

Snap has also announced new augmented reality and camera search experiences for creators, partners, and Snapchatters.

Lenses are Snap’s augmented reality product. Snapchat Lenses combine some of the world’s most advanced augmented reality technology with the creativity of the Snapchat community. On average, more than 70% of Daily Active Users play with or view a Lens every day on the service.

Scan is Snap’s camera search experience. Snapchatters can “press and hold” on the Snapchat camera screen to scan and unlock relevant experiences based on what is in the viewfinder or environment. They can scan a Snapcode to unlock special filters and Lenses, a physical product or barcode to surface search results on Amazon, or while listening to music to learn more about what’s playing, through an integration with Shazam.

Snap’s Lens Studio is a free, publicly available desktop app for anyone to build and distribute Lenses on Snapchat. Lens Studio packages up Snap’s state of the art computer vision and graphics technology into simple templates for creators. More than 400,000 Lenses have been created by Snap’s community through Lens Studio, and those Lenses have been played with over 15 billion times.

Snap is updating Lens Studio to include more capabilities for Lens creation, including templates for hand tracking, body tracking, and pet tracking.
Lens Studio will now include templates for Snap’s new Landmarker Lens experiences. These Lenses enable augmented reality experiences that can transform landmarks in real-time.

Templates for five locations are available to creators now, including Buckingham Palace (London), United States Capitol Building (Washington, DC), Eiffel Tower (Paris), Flatiron Building (New York City), and the TCL Chinese Theater (Los Angeles).

AR Bar and Scan

Snap is also introducing a new, unified Lens experience on the platform and additional, robust camera search capabilities. “AR Bar” and “Scan” will begin rolling out soon to Snapchatters.

AR Bar is designed to make it easier for Snapchatters to discover and navigate Lenses and camera search experiences. They will be able to Create, Scan, Browse, and Explore all in one place.

AR Bar will also feature a new Scan button, designed to bring up contextually relevant Lenses and camera-based experiences with a tap.

With Scan, relevant Lenses, including those created by Snap’s public community through Lens Studio, will appear for Snapchatters based on what is in the camera view.

Snap is also introducing new Scan partners. In partnership with Photomath, Snapchatters will be able to point the Snapchat camera at a math equation to see the solution appear within the camera. Additionally, a new integration with partner GIPHY will invite users to decorate their Snaps with contextually relevant, dynamically generated GIF Lenses based on what’s in the Snapchat camera view.

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