Designing Facebook Frames using AR Studio

There has been a lot of Hype around AR.

We have seen an AR boom in the last 2 years. From games to camera effects we have been promised a world where we can see and interact with lush objects in hi-definition 3D as if they are real and co-exists with us. We are yet to get to a stage where it can be used in a day to day setting despite having some use cases in medicine and education. For now, AR has found a home as a fun add-on to the ever-increasing number of selfies that we love taking. They offer a fresh look and style to our images and create a much more memorable experience.

So when FB released their own effects creator tool – AR Studio a few weeks ago, we naturally had to try it out.

This is not the first time BlueAnt has dabbled in augmented reality but in all our previous attempts we have always had a huge disadvantage of getting people to download a separate app so that they can enjoy the experience. With the Facebook app supporting AR effects natively this problem has been diminished to an extent.

We made a simple effect using our own Ant Bot as a 3D model that tracks the user face and lets the user become the incredible Ant Bot. We also had a look at the particle effects which are nothing short of being awesome. We did run into some issues that we are sure future updates will sort out. The app supports creating effects using objects around users environment and uses visual scripting to help designers create effects by themselves.

We created a new 3D Ant bot since our old one was too complicated and could not fit in the 2 MB download limit for the effect. Since all the heavy-duty tracking and gesture support is already built in, all we had to do was align our model and color it using the materials. We used some particle effects to top it off. Since it was a quick first look we decided to see if this gets accepted. And it was!

If you have the Facebook app you can try out our new effect right now. Be sure to send us your selfies so we will put you up on our fan wall (no, not the ceiling).

We found the app to be very easy and intuitive and has a lot of potential for space design using AR. With this tool, Facebook has given the opportunity to everyone who has a decent smartphone to experience AR around them. We eagerly await more innovation in AR (*Wink *Wink Magic Leap) and creator tools and look forward to using them for our different projects.


Siddhi Jain

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