Snap Camera is unusable from January 2023

Snapchat announced in early January that its Snap Camera app will stop working forever from 25 January 2023.

What is Snap Camera?

Snap Camera was a computer program that allowed you to use Snap filters on your computer for video conferencing and streaming. All you had to do was download the app, connect the source to the software and in a few clicks your Snapchat filter would appear. This app launched in 2018 and was a great tool for telecommuting or more casual visios. Some people equate Snap lenses with the dog-eared effect, but there were more serious or appropriate filters. Indeed, companies could create a Snapchat filter specifically for video conferencing that employees could use.


A surprising and discreet announcement

Indeed, this announcement has not been communicated massively and you can only find the information on the support page of the web application. No press release has been sent to the press and many people will surely be surprised on January 25th to not be able to use the software anymore. Currently, Snap has not communicated on alternatives to Snap Camera, the firm mentions the use of the web version of the Snapchat application but it does not allow to integrate filters in streams.

using snapchat filters on a computer

This decision did not please many people and will put a lot of streamers in trouble. Even if few people knew about Snap Camera, it was widely used by streamers to animate their live shows. On the Snap forum, you can find many creators or streamers angry about the situation. For some, part of their revenue was made by creating filters only dedicated to streams and visios, and for others, they used these lenses for their stream.

Why is Snap Camera no longer working?

For the moment, the Snap group has not given an explanation for this unexpected closure. But several elements can be taken into account in order to guess the choice to close this tool.

Firstly, Snap Camera was completely free and no revenue was earned. However, it still required teams of developers to maintain and update the software. As you may know, Snap is currently in the red and needs to do something to keep moving in the right direction. Indeed, in 2022, 20% of the employees were laid off. The first assumption is that the choice to close Snap Camera allows to limit the loss of money.

Secondly, among Snap Camera consumers, we could find employees who telework. Since the end of the Covid 19 pandemic, many have stopped teleworking. In addition, most video conferencing tools themselves offer filters to use. This avoids participants connecting their source to Snap and "wasting time" (even though this was a very quick process).

For the moment we don't know the future of this feature as Snapchat has not communicated more information. This may be an opportunity for Meta to develop a similar and equally powerful tool.