MOVE over Snapchat, Facebook is set to launch a camera feature that takes the zany augmented reality filters to the masses.
In yet another move to mimic the best features of its social media rival, Facebook product manager Sachin Monga said the new camera functions in the Facebook app to be rolled out have been in development for a year.
The update being rolled out this week includes changes to the way people share photos and videos.
Mr Monga said the change reflected the belief of Facebook head Mark Zuckerberg that the world was shifting away from words and towards visual content.
“Now most of what we share on the internet is photos,” Mr Monga said.
“As everybody got a camera in their product, photos became the thing that we wanted to share.
“When you think about Facebook, and how people have been using Facebook for the last 13 years, it’s really been a place to share with your friends and family.
“That’s what Facebook started out as and that what people come to Facebook today to do. But the way that people share has changed significantly in the past decade or so,” Mr Monga said.
“In the future, we see a world not too far off when most of what we share will be videos.
“We really think we are closer to the beginning of this shift towards visual content than we are towards the end.”
Along with adding the new in-app camera with zany effects, the updates to the Facebook app include other Snapchat-like features including the ability to share photos and videos directly with specific people, with the content disappearing after it is viewed, and a “Stories” section where content disappears after a day.
While the Snapchat generation see the ability to apparently vomit rainbows or add a puppy’s features to your selfies as old hat, for much of the wider population outside of Snapchat’s key teen demographic the Facebook changes will be an introduction to the world of augmented reality.
The announcement today is likely to be just the first step towards augmented reality becoming more mainstream, with Apple tipped to include AR features in the tenth anniversary iPhone expected to be released in September.
Mr Monga said adding the camera to a more prominent part of the Facebook app would be “a really interesting canvas for us to build upon in the future”.
“One of the most exciting parts of this launch is that we have the ability to bring an AR-enabled camera to the more than 1 billion people who are using the app every day,” he said.
Online Source: The News