Creators on Instagram Get a Host of New Spark AR Features

Facebook’s augmented reality creation platform released several updates

Spark AR's Effect Gallery Facebook
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Facebook’s Spark AR augmented reality creation platform revealed several new features and capabilities geared toward Instagram.

The company said in a blog post, “Sound is critical to our perception of the world. We think it’s increasingly what separates the good from the great among AR experiences, too. Whether you’re building simple face masks or immersive world effects, Spark AR Studio offers a wide range of sound capabilities to help add depth and dimension to your AR effects, and today we’re adding another with the rollout of music reactive capabilities on Instagram.”

AR effects can now be created that respond, move and play in sync with music in the environment, uploaded directly or selected from Instagram’s music picker, which offers access to thousands of free tracks.

Facebook

Facebook

Facebook

Facebook said the new AR music effects are available for Android, with iOS to be added soon.

The social network also introduced two ways for creators to integrate their own photos and videos into AR effects.

Creators can augment photos and videos previously captured with the Instagram camera or saved to their devices’ media libraries.

Facebook

Or they can build AR effects that enable people to personalize them with their own images via Gallery Picker, which gives users access to “green screen-style, fill-in-the-blank effects.”

Facebook

Stickers templates were introduced in 2D and 3D in order to enable the creation of world AR effects using plane tracking to place images and objects in a scene.

Facebook

The new sticker templates also use Instagram’s Native UI (user interface) Picker, which gives people more options for the types of stickers they can pick.

Instagram released a feature in late April, Effect Stories, which enable accounts with published effects to discover how people are using them, including up to 25 Stories from Instagram users that included a specific effect.

Users can go to the Effects tab on their profile pages and, if any Effects Stories are available, a highlighted border will appear around their effect icon.

Finally, Instagram also recently rolled out a new surface in Effect Gallery to showcase AR effects from creators. It was used to promote effects for the photo- and video-sharing network’s Stay Home initiative and graduation celebrations.


david.cohen@adweek.com David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.