Snap is expanding its developer platform to allow creators build face filters for the first time. The company is releasing 7 new templates to permit creators build digital masks into Lens Studio a platform it introduced four months ago which gave creators ability to build the AR objects that Snap refers to as “world lenses.” The templates which range in complexity include virtual baseball hats, face paint, and tools to attach 3-dimensional objects to the head of the user.
Adding to the new templates is a Giphy integration. In February, Snapchat added Giphy’s library of animated GIFs into its platform, now they can also feature into lenses.
Over 30,000 lenses were created in the first two months which according to Snap earned more than a billion views. Eitan Pilipski, who runs the camera platform at Snap said in an interview that, “We’re blown away by the participation, the level of engagement, and the type of creativity that has happened.”
Reports from our sources state that the studio allows creators build simple face filters in five minutes. After uploading it to Snap, the company generates a Snapcode and deep link that when tapped, opens it within Snapchat for 24 hours. The code remains live a year after its creation allowing you to unlock it multiple times. You can send the code to friends with a few taps whether you created it yourself or you received it from others.
Snapchat generates a story for all public snaps created using the lens to promote creators’ handicraft. If the next dancing hot dog meme is initiated by a Snapchat user, one can browse all public snaps posted to the Our Story feature in the past 24 hours using that lens. Community lenses will be highlighted in the Discover tab, and a user can unlock the lens by swiping up on the story.
Snap is also announcing the Official Creator Program to reward top creators with extra promotion, technical support, and early access to new features and templates.
The face filter templates range in complexity from a two-dimensional image planted on the head to more complex face-painting jobs.