Tired of using virtual backgrounds to spice up your Microsoft Teams calls? Well, you now have a new way to express yourself during meetings. Microsoft and Snap have today announced the integration of Snapchat Lenses for Teams to bring a bit of fun to virtual meetings.
As part of the integration, Teams users will get access to a collection of 26 popular Lenses during meetings. You can use the Lenses to do things like transform yourself into a cartoon character or add fun backgrounds to your video. Snap says the new integration aims to allow for more fun and engaging meetings. You don’t need to download anything to access the Lenses, as you can get started by clicking on “Video effects” and selecting the “Snapchat” tab.
“With the rise of hybrid and flexible work, our customers need tools that help build connections and foster a productive and enjoyable work environment,” said Microsoft Teams Vice President Nicole Herskowitz in an emailed statement. “That’s why we are excited to bring Snapchat’s most popular Lenses natively into Microsoft Teams meetings, making it easy for users to add even more personality and fun to video calls. With Snapchat Lenses for Teams, we are offering customers a new way to express themselves and engage with co-workers in a dynamic and entertaining manner.”
Snap says the integration is made possible by Camera Kit, Snap’s SDK that allows partners to leverage Snap’s AR technology in their own applications and websites.
It’s worth noting that this is Microsoft’s second integration with Camera Kit. The company has also used Camera Kit to bring Snap AR into Flip, Microsoft’s video learning platform where educators can post topic prompts to spark video discussions among students. Since adding Snap AR to the Flip web experience, the company has seen a 60% increase in students and teachers creating videos.
Today’s announcement comes a few months after Snap shut down its camera app for desktop that allowed users to apply filters on video calls. At the time, Snap said that it was focusing more on expanding Camera Kit access for the web. The company first introduced Snap Camera in 2018 as a way for creators to spice up their Twitch stream, but the camera app really took off during the pandemic in 2020 when people started using it with video conferencing apps like Microsoft Teams, Skype, YouTube, Google Hangouts, Skype and Zoom. The app, available on both Windows and Mac, allowed users to switch between different face filters during a video call or a livestream.
Snap says it’s continuing to work closely with new partners to integrate Camera Kit, which means we will likely see Snapchat Lenses pop up in more popular apps and platform in the future.