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Twitter’s new Instagram/Snapchat style camera is now live

This is cool, I guess.

new twitter camera
Image: Screenshot / KnowTechie

Last month we reported that Twitter was working on a Snapchat-style camera that basically looked like every social media app’s camera. I mean, seriously, look at it and tell me it doesn’t. In any event, Twitter is slowly rolling it out today to all of its users.

The new camera allows users to overlay captions on photos, videos, and Live broadcasts before sharing them. Additionally, the new camera’s functionality lets you add a location, hashtag, and colored overlays to your pictures. If this all sounds familiar, it’s because this is basically what Snapchat and Instagram have been doing for years.

To get the new camera up and running, all you have to do is swipe left from the timeline. At the time of writing this, I wasn’t able to bring it up for some reason, but Twitter says the new camera is slowly rolling out and folks who don’t see it the new camera now should see it later in the week.

Here’s a quick video Twitter provided on how to launch its new camera

To be clear, Twitter isn’t trying to copy Snapchat and Instagram by implementing a Stories features. Instead, it is giving users a better camera and features that could (but probably will not) lure users from other social platforms to the service.

When users share their pictures from the new camera, images appear to be full-height in the timeline, not cropped like every other piece of media uploaded to Twitter. Once you’ve shot some content, overlays pop up with prompts for adding a location and a caption to “describe what’s happening.”

Again, we weren’t able to test out the new camera for ourselves, but the folks over at TechCrunch got some time with it and provided some notes on how it works:

When you swipe left on the timeline, you’ll see a Snapchat style camera shutter button that records photos with a tap, and looping videos up to two minutes long if you hold. A mini-swipe over and you can record video or audio-only live broadcasts without any Periscope branding, Twitter will then recommend hashtags based on big nearby events and other signals, or you can add your own as well as a location and text. You can choose between six colors for the TV news-style chyron those tags on overlayed on that help Twitter route the content into the imagery carousels for its different What’s Happening sections.

Again, if you’re familiar with Snapchat and Instagram’s overlay features, you’ll have no problem navigating through Twitter’s new camera and all of the features bundled into it.

Keep in mind, if the new camera isn’t available on your app, be patient, Twitter says they’re rolling it out to all users over next few days.

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