Lens Store, we hardly new ye. Two months after it first gave its users the option to download specialized filters called lenses for $.99 apiece, Snapchat has announced its decision to close down its Lens Store and limit users to a rotating selection of free lenses.
Snapchat introduced lenses in September and amused its users by giving them the ability to add rainbow vomit, bulging eyes, and other goofy effects to their snaps. Two months later, the ephemeral messaging app attempted to monetize lenses, but that effort did not go over well with some users, who took to social media to voice their displeasure. Anyone who said “screw the haters” and paid $.99 for their favorite lenses will still be able to access their collections even after the Lens Store closes, though they will be unable to make additional purchases.
Many apps thrive off the money earned through “microtransactions,” so it makes sense that Snapchat tried to experiment with that model. The Lens Store wasn’t the answer, but perhaps Snapchat’s next pay-to-use feature will catch on.