In what is fast becoming a very familiar story: Facebook again attempting a Snapchat clone. And this time, the company putting a soft right inside its main application.
The social network has introduced a new feature for its experimental camera application that allows users to privately share photos with filters and other effects.
A function that does not yet have an official name is limited to Ireland at the moment, although it is possible that some of the test version may eventually lead to more locations (Facebook previously tested similar functions in Canada and Brazil during the Olympic Games.)
For those who are part of the test, a camera icon appears in the upper left corner of the application (this is where the Messenger icon now appears for US users). Tapping into that menu, or hitting directly from news feeds opens a new camera.
The interface itself will probably look pretty familiar with Snapchat users – it opens the camera and you can take photos and videos and add filters, “mask” and other effects. It also includes the style of the Prisma, which uses artificial intelligence to make your photos and video look like a piece of art.
Once you have taken photos with the addition of effects, you have two sharing options: you can share on Facebook or you can share it privately with a limited group of friends through a feature called direct.
Direct, which also bears a striking resemblance to another application for exchanging messages, allows you to share photos you take in the camera with only your friends you choose. Messages shared in this way will appear in a new application that can reach from the upper left corner. There, your friends can also write the answers to all your photos and videos.