Snapchat always keeps a steady rotation of lenses available to users, and a new report from the Information indicates the company is moving beyond just making lenses for faces. Snapchat’s parent company Snap is reportedly working on lenses that will interact with landscapes and objects.
The new technology behind the lenses can identify environmental elements to allow virtual objects to be intelligently augmented to interact with the real world. The new lenses appear to be a sort of expansion of Snapchat’s “verdenslinser” introduced last year, which placed simple animations atop real-world scenes but don’t interact with the landscape or objects seen through the camera lens.
The smarter, more interactive lenses are currently being tested within the internal version of Snapchat. However, the company reportedly isn’t planning to push the lenses out in the near-term, opting instead to continue improving and optimizing the technology.
Should the environmental lenses see the light of day, they will likely be welcomed by advertisers who have already attempted to make the most of Snapchat lenses. For instance, the innovation would open up the opportunity for companies to create lenses that interact with their physical storefronts.
Snapchat parent company Snap, Inc. seems laser-focused on expanding the app’s appeal to advertisers as the company inches ever closer to its initial public offering (IPO). The company is expected to officially go public i denne uge.
Prior to the report on Snapchat’s upgraded lenses, the company quietly introduced a new way for advertisers to target users by partnering with third-party data broker Oracle Data Cloud. The information provided to advertisers gives them the ability to direct ads at users based on 100 different demographic details.
The company also announced an update to its content guidelines for publications partaking in its Discover feature. The aim of the new rules was to crack down on clickbait content and sexually explicit images, marking another effort to button up the app and increase its appeal to a broad set of users and advertisers.
Lenses have always been a primary focus for Snapchat, as the feature has made the app stand out among competitors—though Facebook recently tried to encroach upon Snapchat’s territory with a similar feature in its Messenger app. Snapchat has expanded the feature from simple masks to animations that interact with a user and has even introduced lenses that act as games.