Snapchat is the latest app to add functionality. The app is rolling out the “Dual Camera” recording feature that it introduced during its Partner Summit earlier this year. The update allows users to take photos and videos using their phone’s front and rear cameras simultaneously. It’s already available on iOS for iPhone XS and later (Snap says the dual camera won’t be available on Android for several more months).
The company first teased the feature, saying the new video option would be part of a more advanced set of features for creators called “director mode.” But while director mode hasn’t been released yet, Snap says it’s expected in the next few months, the company opted to implement the dual camera as a standalone feature on Snapchat’s main camera.
Capturing content with both devices’ cameras at once isn’t a new concept: the briefly popular app experimented with it nearly a decade ago, but the concept has become more popular in recent months with the rise of the BeReal selfie app. . However, Snapchat’s take on the feature is a bit different than those apps, which were more focused on selfies.
With Snapchat Dual Camera enabled, users can record video using both cameras at once and can change the layout of the two clips. There’s a split-screen version, which places each camera in the middle of the screen; a picture-in-picture style; and a cutout mode similar to the effect you might get with TikTok’s green screen. Dual camera mode is also compatible with Snapchat’s signature augmented reality lenses, though for now the effects can only be applied after the fact.
Snap isn’t the only company experimenting with dual-camera recording. Instagram is also testing a dual-camera setup called , which the company confirmed last week is currently an “in-house prototype.” For now, that feature sounds more like a direct copy of BeReal, but it’s not hard to imagine that one day the feature could appear on reels as well.
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