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Facebook tests MSQRD selfie filters and opening your camerafeed run through the end of the Olympics

We all seen Olympic-themed profile pictures, now Facebook is trying the same starting with an Olympics-themed test in Brazil and Canada. Instead of just the “What are you doing?” text status update prompt, users will see an open camera window as Facebook executes on Mark Zuckerberg’s promise to put “video at the heart of all of our apps.”

The new feature also sports the first official integration of Facebook’s acquisition MSQRD’s animated selfie filters, which are similar to Snapchat’s selfie Lenses.

Using MSQRD’s object recognition tech, users can swipe to apply different Olympics face paint like Brazilian flags and “Go Canada!” that match the contours of their face. People can also add static graphic overlay filters like “Team Canada”, similar to Snapchat’s geofilters, to photos and videos they shoot or upload.

Here’s a demo of the features:

The test that I call the “camerafeed” will roll out today to all iOS and Android users in Canada plus iOS users in Brazil, and run through the end of the Olympics. If users show they prefer the camerafeed design and create more content with it, it could be released to everyone.

According to figures attained by The Information, original content sharing like status updates, photos, and home-made videos, was down 15% year over year on Facebook as of February.

Opening the News Feed to the camera will encourage Facebook’s 1.1 billion daily users to take and share more photos and videos. And thanks the MSQRD filters, people can jazz up their face so they feel less self-conscious or basic about sharing selfies.

When asked where the idea for the camera feed design came from, and whether Snapchat inspired it, Monga was unusually candid, matching the sentiment of Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom who said “They deserve all the credit” when asked about Instagram Stories cloning Snapchat.

Eventually, Facebook wants to build even more “magical augmented reality” into its camera, Monga says. Facebook already had graphic filters called “Profile frames” and the ability to add drawings, text, and doodles to your photo uploads. You also could save animated selfies from MSQRD and upload them to Facebook. But now these features are front and center instead of being buried.

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