Snapchat's 3D Lenses filters now work in the real world

Source: Snapchat

It's Snap's world, and we're just living in it — if you believe the camera company's latest feature.

Snap announced on Tuesday it was adding its popular Snapchat Lenses feature, which superimposes 3D effects over real-world photos, to the rear-facing camera option on your smartphone.

Previously, digital effects and masks called Lenses could be added to photo or video snaps using the front-facing camera on a smartphone. Other effects could be seen if you used the rear-facing camera, but they weren't as interactive or in 3D.

Now, users can turn the lens on the outside world and add 3D text, see flowers sprout up or any other number of effects. It's the biggest step Snap has taken into augmented reality, where computer generated images are superimposed on the real world, and is similar in effect to the Pokemon Go game that captured millions of users in 2016.

Many other companies, including Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft, are also experimenting with augmented reality, mostly delivered through headsets that users wear on their face. Snap has Spectacles, glasses which can be used to take photos -- in theory, it could add Lenses to Spectacles for a quick and easy version of AR.

The move could also help Snap stay ahead of arch-competitor Facebook, whose Instagram Stories recently passed Snapchat in terms of daily users.

See some of the new features below: