Facebook to Shut Down MSQRD AR Face-Filtering App
Facebook has announced that it will close its Augmented Reality (AR) facial filtering application called MSQRD.
On April 13, Facebook will remove the app from the Android and iOS app stores.
Facebook acquired MSQRD in 2016 and the AR app played a key role in enhancing the company’s portfolio of AR video and imaging tools like ‘Spark AR’ which allows users to create custom face filters for Facebook and Instagram.
“MSQRD was instrumental in building early momentum for AR and providing insight to build Facebook’s platform today,” the company said in a statement Friday night.
“Our focus now is to bring you the best possible AR experiences through Spark AR, the platform that allows anyone to create their own AR effects and share them with the Facebook family,” he added.
People can still find AR effects directly on Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and Portal.
Today, Instagram and Snapchat offer several built-in face swapping tools.
Powered by Snapchat lenses and Facebook stories, AR is gaining fast traction.
Facebook is currently building its own operating system (OS) from scratch that will power its hardware – primarily AR and virtual reality (VR) headsets like Oculus and video calling devices like Portal currently running Google’s Android OS.
By moving to its own operating system, Facebook could integrate more indigenous features into its devices and, hopefully, privacy, creating a custom operating system for its AR glasses or portal devices.