As if the launch of Instagram Stories, and subsequent Snapchat-like features on both Instagram and Facebook, weren’t enough. Facebook is copying Snapchat, one feature at a time. So, we’re not surprised that the social media giant is testing yet another new feature that reeks “Snapchat.”
You’re probably growing tired of hearing how Facebook is blatantly copying feature after feature from Snapchat. I know I have. But here we are, yet again. Facebook is testing a new camera feature on its main app, allowing its users to share images with different filters and effects. These news come hot on the heels of a recent announcement by Chris Cox, Facebook’s Chief Product Officer that Facebook is working on Prisma-like effects for Live.
For users who have the feature, a camera icon appears on the top left-hand corner of their Facebook app that they can tap on to enter the new camera. They can also swipe right from their News Feed to get there. The new camera looks a lot like Snapchat itself. With it, users can take pictures and record videos, and then add effects, masks, and filters. The feature also includes the artistic effects that Cox had talked about.
After adding chosen effects etc, the user has the ability to share them on Facebook (just like any other post), or privately – to single friends or groups of friends with a feature called direct. Direct allows users to send images or videos taken with the new camera with the friends they choose. The messages sent with direct can be accessed in a new area of the app, and friends can reply with their own images or videos. Finally, the messages will disappear once users stop chatting.
The unnamed new camera feature is being tested in Ireland for now, whereas similar ones had been tested recently in Canada and Brazil during the Rio Olympics. It is not clear where and whether it will be tested elsewhere in the near future. This, and other features recently tested, show that Facebook is looking to help users create and share more “casual” content of their everyday lives.