Snapchat is already shuttering its lens store

Turns out the Snapchat lens store was more of a pop-up shop.

Snapchat is shutting down the lens store less than two months after it opened. In November, the platform put some of its popular lenses — essentially glorified photo filters — behind a paywall, charging users a 99 cents apiece to splash rainbow puke and other stickers across their photos. Almost immediately, the Internet lashed Snapchat telling it that “no one is going to buy those filters, losers.” Apparently not!

Snapchat says in a blog post that the store will close on Friday and that purchased lenses can still be used after it shutters. Some of the most popular paid lenses won’t be made free again for awhile. Moving forward, Snapchat will distribute 10 free lenses, up from the seven it offers now.

Selling lenses was the second Snapchat foray into in-app purchases, the first being selling replays of videos snaps from three replays for .99 cents to $4.99 for 20 repeats.

It’s unclear why Snapchat is closing the store, even though it sold tens of thousands every day, according to sources close to the platform. The company can make a lot more money from selling sponsored selfies, like this one produced for the Peanuts movie, which can cost brands between $475,000 to $700,000.

Also, axing the lens store shows that Snapchat is focusing its money making efforts to more lucrative places. As Digiday first reported yesterday, it’s building an API that would let third-party technology partners plug in and start buying ad spots.

Instead of puking rainbows, the company would rather print money. Go figure.

More in Media

NewFronts Briefing: Samsung, Condé Nast, Roku focus presentations on new ad formats and category-specific inventory

Day two of IAB’s NewFronts featured presentations from Samsung, Condé Nast and Roku, highlighting new partnerships, ad formats and inventory, as well as new AI capabilities.

The Athletic to raise ad prices as it paces to hit 3 million newsletter subscribers

The New York Times’ sports site The Athletic is about to hit 3 million total newsletter subscribers. It plans to raise ad prices as as a result of this nearly 20% year over year increase.

NewFronts Briefing: Google, Vizio and news publishers pitch marketers with new ad offerings and range of content categories

Day one of the 2024 IAB NewFronts featured presentations from Google and Vizio, as well as a spotlight on news publishers.