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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday shared his vision of Facebook’s future at the annual F8 developers conference.
And people couldn’t help but notice that the subtext of this vision seemed to be all about one thing: Facebook crushing Snap.
Facebook launched a bunch of new tools that will let programmers write apps that turns your phone’s camera into “augmented reality” (AR) device. AR is when digital stuff is overlaid on top of the real world. This can be fantasy images like rainbows or masks on a person’s face (for example Snapchat filters). Or it can be useful stuff, like information about the bottle of wine in a photo.
For instance, Facebook announced a development tool that lets developers write effects for Facebooks AR app, akin to Snap’s filters.
There was more than a little bit of a hint that Facebook is working towards eventually making AR glasses, something Snap wants to do with its Spectacles video glasses.
Facebook’s new tool Precise Location tool is nearly the same as Snap’s new feature, also announced on Tuesday, World Lenses.
And the impact was not lost on attendees.
Twitter was lit up with comments on how Facebook’s whole developers conference seemed to be geared toward crushing Snap.
— Mike Rundle (@flyosity) April 18, 2017
Snapchat: “We are a camera company”
Facebook: “Hold my beer”#F8
— Miquel Llobet (@mllobet) April 18, 2017
Remember, Facebook tried to pull an Instagram and buy Snapchat several years back when it was still tiny, offering a reported $3 billion. Snapchat said no.
— RwamwengeOnAGoodDay (@e_rwa) April 18, 2017
— Rich Greenfield (@RichBTIG) April 18, 2017
Snap: we are a Camera company
Facebook: we are building an AR platform on top of Camera#f8
— Paolo Perazzo (@SiVola) April 18, 2017
I cannot get over the shade of consistently referring to the “camera” (ie. lenses) as AR in its “first” or “primitive” state. #f8
— Anna (@hey_Anna) April 18, 2017
Facebook maybe coping a concept from @Snap but man, they know how to scale a software for the masses.
— Tal Chalozin (@chalozin) April 18, 2017
FB is allowing devs to create their own AR camera elements. Think face masks & other layers. Basically, HUGE middle finger to Snap #F8 ????
— Jenn Van Grove (@jbruin) April 18, 2017
To sum up the general reaction to Facebook’s grand new master AR plan, “So basically #F8 is all about crushing Snap into smithereens. Got it.”
So basically #F8 is all about cushing Snap into smithereens. Got it.
— Chris Hedgecock (@knofun) April 18, 2017