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Snap launches Director Mode and brings ray tracing to Snapchat lenses

Snap took to the stage at its fourth annual Partner Summit to announce all the new AR and camera features coming to Snapchat and Spectacles in 2022. 

These include a new Director Mode for creators, AR tools for developers and a partnership with Live Nation that’ll bring augmented reality to concerts and festivals. 

One of the most interesting updates for us regular users and creators alike is Director Mode.

Director mode appears to be Snap’s latest attempt at taking on the likes of TikTok and Instagram Reels, offering a new set of camera and editing tools that make it easier to create polished content in Snapchat.

This includes a new Dual Camera feature that lets you record using the front and rear cameras at the same time, meaning no more turning the camera to capture your reaction. 

There’s also a Green Screen mode that lets you play around with your background, as well as a Quick Edit feature for editing multiple snaps together. 

Snapchat ray tracing lens Buzz Lightyear

Snap is also rolling out a number of new augmented reality tools for developers, so expect to see some impressive AR capabilities in future lenses. 

This includes ray tracing for more lifelike shiny things, including a sparkling Tiffany & Co. broach and a Buzz Lightyear suit lens that catches the light. 

Snapchat location lens Lego

Other developer updates include the ability to interact with multiple users in the same lens, location-based experiences anchored onto cities, and cloud storage that allows users to pick up lenses where they last left off. 

Another major change coming to the Snapchat app is the Dress Up tab. Dress Up sounds similar to Instagram’s Shop tab, but with an emphasis on Snap’s AR try-on features, allowing you to try on outfits and accessories and see what they look like on your body before you hit buy. 

Snapchat Dress Up Puma AR Shopping

Finally, Snap has announced a multi-year partnership with Live Nation that’ll create new ways of fans to experience live music at concerts and festivals, starting with EDC Las Vegas in May, though Snap hasn’t revealed exactly what this entails at this point.

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