Snapchat's Lens Studio Is A Self-Serve Platform For The Booming AR Movement

Snap Inc has debuted a new self-serve platform called Lens Studio that will allow people, marketers, and developers to create their own augmented reality objects. Snap has combined its forces with seven marketing partners including MediaMonks, Fishermen Labs, Haus, Avatar Labs, North Kingdom, Trigger Global, and VidMob who will work to make AR for brands and agencies. However, anyone can use Lens Studio.

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Lens Studio is a website that designers can login to that is tied to the Snapchat ad platform. With the website, user can create, publish, and share AR characters. Snapchat says that over 3,000 lenses have been created in the last year including graphics for sponsors like Warner Bros., Bud Light, and BMW. Snap also points out that 70 million people per day use a lens, which is about a third of all Snapchat users.

While talking up the Lens Studio, Snapchat also gave up some details on the number of photos that it believes will be taken with Snapchat this year, and that number is insane. Snapchat expects 1 trillion photos to be taken this year and if you do the math that works out to over 31,000 photos taken per second.

Facebook launched its own AR platform this week and Lens Studio comes right on the heels of that launch. AR is one of the areas that many brands and social networks are focusing on today.

"When you open it up to the masses, you have the ability for more ideas to generate so that it’s not in a 'walled garden,'" said Jeff Malmad, managing director of Mindshare North America’s Life+. "If you unleash people and you let the masses participate in the creation of something that’s new, you’ll start to find new and unique things that maybe you didn’t realize you should or could do."