Facebook is acquiring a popular photo app, called MSQRD, that turns your mug into an animated selfie. Facebook is buying the app’s creator, Masquerade Technologies, for an undisclosed sum.
Masquerade’s face-swapping technology let’s you play around with animated filters that go over your face and morph your appearance. When opening the app, the front camera activates immediately and a row of filters appear on the bottom. Similar to Snapchat’s creepy face-swap filter, Masquerade lets users morph into different animals, such as a panda or a tiger, and even famous celebs like Leonardo DiCaprio and Jimmy Kimmel. With the overlay, you can snap a picture or video and share it on social media, as well as through text messaging.
The app has garnered average ratings of 4.5-5 stars on both the iTunes and Google Play app stores, and with Facebook integration, Masquerade’s popularity could explode even further. According to Tech Insider, Facebook will keep Masquerade as a standalone app.
“Within Facebook, we’re going to be able to reach people at a scale like never before,” Masquerade CEO Eugene Nevgen wrote in a message on the MSQRD website. “For starters, we’ll be able to bring our technology to Facebook’s audience of nearly 1.6 billion people. This is a scale of audience we never imagined was possible.”
Masquerade’s face-swapping tech, which uses face-tracking and 3D effects, coincides with the enormous buzz behind Snapchat’s face-swapping filter, which allows users to swap faces with a person beside them. Facebook’s acquisition suggests this type of photo is a big enough trend for the social network to latch onto (and keep it in competition with Snapchat), but it also expands the fun elements within
“Masquerade has built a fantastic app, MSQRD, with world-class imaging technology for video,” a Facebook representative told Tech Insider. “We’re excited to welcome Masquerade to our team and continue enhancing the