Snapchat building ‘visual search’ tool where camera identifies objects

Snapchat is developing a ‘visual image search’ that lets you point your camera at an item to see it on Amazon, secret code reveals

  • Hidden code shows that Snapchat may be building a new ‘Camera Search’ tool 
  • It would let people use Snapchat’s camera to identify objects, songs and more
  • Snapchat would then prompt user to view products and sellers on Amazon
  • The code was located by a researcher in Snapchat’s Android app files 
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Snapchat could have some big plans for the camera in its app. 

Code hidden in the social media giant’s Android app shows that Snapchat may be prepping a ‘Camera Search’ feature. 

The feature, referred to internally as ‘Eagle,’ would be able to identify products, barcodes and songs once users take a photo with Snapchat’s camera.

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Snapchat could have some big plans for the camera in its app. Code hidden in the social media giant’s Android app shows that Snapchat may be prepping a ‘Camera Search’ feature

‘Press and hold to identify an object, song, barcode and more,’ the code states, according to TechCrunch. 

‘This works by sending data to Amazon, Shazam and other partners.’ 

If it recognizes what you scanned, it will direct the user to ‘see all results at Amazon.’ If not, it will say ‘Bummer, we didn’t catch that.’

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Users can also copy and share links to the Amazon products with friends on Snapchat.

Researcher Ishan Agarwal, which first spotted the move, said in a tweet that there were photos of the Amazon Logo and XML data that included the terms ‘Eagle coped link banner’ and ‘Eagle Shazam,’ among other things.  

The tool would work similar to Google Lens, a visual search feature developed by Google last year.



Researcher Ishan Agarwal, which first spotted the move, said there were photos of the Amazon logo and XML data that included the terms ‘Eagle coped link banner’ and ‘Eagle Shazam’

Unlike Snap’s ‘Camera Search’ tool, however, Lens helps users identify objects in photos and then provides additional context.

News of the feature propelled shares of Snap higher by 1.1% to $13.69 on Monday afternoon. 

Many believe that it could help kickstart additional user growth on the platform, as well as a serve a new source of revenue for Snapchat. 

Snapchat could be able to collect referral fees from Amazon by linking out to products on the site, TechCrunch noted.  


News of the feature propelled shares of Snap higher by 1.1% to $13.69 on Monday afternoon

Over the past several months, Snapchat has issued a variety of updates aimed at making its camera smarter. 

It launched World Lenses which places interactive, 3D Bitmojis into real world environments. 

The latest of these is a Bitmoji lens that lets users play tennis against Serena Williams, in honor of Wimbledon. 

World Lenses, which were first introduced in September, let users place their 3D cartoon avatar on a surface, move it, scale it, and walk around it, as if it’s really there.


Many believe that it could help kickstart additional user growth on the platform, as well as  serve a new source of revenue for Snapchat, such as referral fees 

WHAT HAS SNAPCHAT INTRODUCED IN THE LAST SIX MONTHS?

Snapchat has introduced several major new features in the last six months to increase its popularity,  including:

  • App redesign: Separates ‘Friends’ and ‘Discover’ pages to create a more personalised experience.
  • Deluxe bitmoji app: Features new hairstyles and skin tones and more inclusive avatars.
  • Snap Store: Users can buy a t-shirt with a dog filter plastered on the front or a plushie of the firm’s ‘augmented reality superstar,’ also known as the dancing hot dog, among other items.
  • Custom geofilters: Geofilters are a location-based tool that allows Snapchat users to share where they are, or what they’re up to, by adding overlay text and images to a Snap. They can be placed to cover an area the size of a house up to a 100 football pitches and made visible for a couple of hours up to a few days. 
  • Share Snapchat Stories with anyone: Users can now share Snapchat stories with anyone, regardless of whether they have the app. The features allows users to create a hyperlink for clips and pictures. The feature appears when you press and hold down on certain ‘tiles’ in the Discover part of the app.
  • Add links, voice filters and backdrops to snaps: The ‘paperclip’ feature allows users to add a link to their snap, which users can open by swiping up. The ‘backdrops’ feature allows users to add a motif backdrop to their snap by drawing they want to stand outside of the filter. The ‘voice filters’ allows users to remix the sound of their voice in various different styles, including that of a cat or an alien.
  • Group video chat: Users can add up to 16 friends at once to a group video chat, which can be accessed in the app’s messaging section Simply tap the video icon in a group chat in the app. Friends in the group will receive a notification inviting them to join.
  • Tagging: To tag a friend, users insert the ‘@’ sign, type out their friend’s username and then tap on the name of the user they want to tag. When a user sees a tagged Snap, they can swipe up and add the person as a friend or view any public Stories.
  • Snappables: Snappables lets you play with your friends in a variety of point scoring challenges and multiplayer scenarios, including fighting aliens or playing basketball. 
  • Friendmojis in iOS: Snapchat began allowing users to send ‘Friendmojis’, or Bitmojis with friends, via the Bitmoji keyboard in iMessages on an iPhone or iPad.
  • ‘Clear Chats’ feature: The ‘Clear Chats’ tool lets you ‘unsend’ messages after they’ve been sent to a friend, either in an individual or a group chat. Just press and hold on a message, click ‘Delete’ and an alert will appear in a chat saying that a message has been removed. 

The World Lenses feature allows users to integrate filters and cartoon characters into the real world.

Last month, Snapchat added two new features to its Snap Map in order to create a ‘living breathing world’ for a user’s Bitmoji.

World Effects adds new animations and color schemes to the map. It will blast confetti on birthdays, and themed maps for holidays or ‘cultural events’.

The second effect, Weather, adds animations to an individual’s Bitmoji when someone zooms in.  

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