Facebook announces Snapchat-like World Effects AR feature for Messenger

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The Facebook AR Studio is the company's next way of targeting Snapchat via products that are essentially clones of features created by a company few see as being a real threat. The feature can be used along with the Facebook and Messenger, using which you can add a 3D heart or word bubbles like "miss you", "bae" floating above something, add an arrow to point to something in a panorama or add the new celebratory robot that plays music to make the media much attractive.

What's next for AR Studio?

Facebook is at a disadvantage in this respect. Snapchat has yet to fully embrace third-party AR content beyond some basic image frame submissions and work with a few fine artists like Jeff Koons. Apart from launching World Effects, Facebook has made yet another announcement where it has announced that it is opening its AR Studio to developers. Unlike the already-present camera filters that let you put on different masks and effects on your selfies, the new additions to the app allow you to throw in a dynamic object that sticks to an augmented plane and gives the impression of intelligently following a predefined path. That way, the more than 1.2 billion Messenger users won't have to use Snapchat to exchange AR-enhanced content. Facebook is now rolling out World Effects to all of its users around the world.

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Facebook has encountered some stumbling blocks in its quest for AR. Holiday effects in camera Starting on Friday, 15 December, users can swipe right in camera to capture and share the seasonal cheer with holiday effects. Meanwhile, Apple's ARKit and Google's ARCore give developers an alternative way to build AR into their own apps at the operating system level rather than having to piggyback on Facebook. But if Facebook Stories aren't popular to watch, that audience isn't easily accessible.

These are "early versions" of World Effects, so you can expect some refinement over time. Whichever app offers the most and best experiences will be the one people wave in the air to see what's hidden out of view.

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