Hot on the heels of Snap Inc.'s newest iteration of its Spectacles wearable, the company has introduced a new set of Lenses called Snappables aimed at bringing a truly AR experience to Snapchat. Unlike the more traditional Lenses, however, these are much more focused on sharing AR gaming experiences which utilize facial expressions, touch, and motion as controls. It's fairly easy to get started, too. The Snappables can be found in Snapchat’s Lens Carousel just to the left of the circle-shaped capture button. The other icons - for World and Face Lenses, respectively - have been moved to the right-hand side of that. As with other additions, this is a global rollout that will arrive via an app update. So it bears repeating that it could take some time before it hits every device.
With regard to the experiences themselves, Snap categorizes the new Lenses into two different groups. Following on-screen instructions, users and their friends or family can gather virtually in a VR-like world together to take part in various activities. Snap Inc. highlights joining a virtual rock band or getting a dance party started, but there are likely quite a few other experiences as well. There are also more "game-like" experiences that are more optimized for a single user to play. As shown in the accompanying video - embedded below - those include activities like using facial expressions or movement to rack up kisses, lift weights, or take down alien invaders in a very Galaga-style fashion. As with the group party-style games, those can also then be sent to friends in the app. While that will allow them to play along, the second type of game is undoubtedly just as much fun to play alone when friends are busy.
Each of the experiences effectively allows users to take advantage of AR in order to transport themselves to another world for some free play activities. If they choose to, they can also bring others along for the trip to multiply the fun factor. Although the games themselves appear to be relatively simplistic, they also look as though they'll generate the perfect amount of quirky fun for a variety of dull moments regardless of where the user happens to be. So, for those Android users who haven't yet checked Snapchat out, now might be a perfect time.