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Snapchat and Instagram Continue AR Filter Battle

Instagram stories now has face filters and Snapchat brings AR ads to life.

It seems like every time Snapchat makes an announcement, Instagram needs to follow suit immediately. Instagram first introduced disappearing Stories, exactly like Snapchat’s, nine months ago. And Stories has been on a rampage, racking up close to 200 million daily active users, clearly becoming a huge success.

In this not so subtle battle between both moment sharing apps, Snapchat announced the rollout of augmented reality ad units, while Instagram announced face filters the day after.

Snapchat Sponsored World Lenses

The latest AR ads from Snapchat let marketers pay to have images or animations overlaid on the world around them seen through their phone’s camera. Dubbed “Sponsored World Lenses,” these are not for taking selfies, but instead use the phone’s outward facing camera. It’s like looking through a window into another world.

The first advertiser on board is Warner Bros who is looking to promote their new upcoming movie “Everything, Everything.” And while Snap announced that other brands like Netflix and Dunkin’ Donuts will have ads soon as well, Instagram had to follow up with an announcement of their own.

Instagram Face Filters

Rolling out to Instagram users today, the Stories camera now has a new face icon with eight augmented reality face filters to transform your look. Similar to Snapchat face filters, you can select to transform yourself to koala or maybe a bunny, using both the front-facing camera and rear camera.

While Instagram Stories continues to gain momentum, with no remorse of being called out as “unoriginal,” we can only expect face-off between the two companies to push augmented reality use cases faster and further, benefiting all of us in the end.

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