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Bizarre Snapchat Update Adds Demons and Rainbow Vomit

Snapchat have a real tendency to overhaul things every time they release a new update, but I'm not sure anyone quite saw this coming. In general terms, the most notable addition is that in the US, in-app purchases have become available. Called 'Replays', they come in packs of 3 for $0.99 and allow users to replay images and videos, rather than them just disappearing after being viewed.

It's a confusing addition, since Snapchat's entire model is based around ephemeral, rapid content, and I'm not certain it will catch on, but I probably said the same thing about the app itself when it first came out, so it's probably best to ignore me on that one. The other feature they've tacked on is called 'Lenses', and this is where things get super-freaky.

Lenses uses facial recognition technology to quickly alter the subjects face with filters and manipulation tools. The results range from unsettling to visions from the deepest circle of hell. There's an awful demon one, a creepy heart-shaped eyes one, a horrifying eye-enhancer and an utterly inexplicable one which has you vomiting rainbows. The one that perplexes me the most though is easily the 'Sherlock' one. The monacle I completely understand, but why it feels the need to make your face crack and melt like you've just opened the ark of the covenant is utterly beyond me. Perhaps they were trying to reflect what Holmes would have looked like after years of shooting cocaine and morphine (no, really).


The lenses work by instructing you to move your face in a particular way. Doing so will activate the selected animation, and then all you need to do is record it, perhaps choosing to say a particularly pertinent line before or after (basically any quote from The Exorcist would probably be fine). You need to be facing the camera straight on for it to work properly.

This addition moves in a pretty different direction to other recent Snapchat updates, which were much more geared towards making the app a more effective social media and news platform, like the Discover feature and the friend emojis. This is probably a better move, since messing around with pictures and videos was what drew people to Snapchat in the first place. The lenses are going to be updated on a regular basis, so expect to keep seeing them on your Facebook feed for the foreseeable future. Yaaaaay...

Callum Davies

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

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Bizarre Snapchat Update Adds Demons and Rainbow Vomit Reviewed by Unknown on Thursday, September 17, 2015 Rating: 5

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