When Snapchat first launched on-demand geofilters — a.k.a. the world’s cheapest wedding gift, if you’re remotely tech savvy — you had to Photoshop them yourself and submit for review and approval via Snap’s website. (Snapchat has pretty strict rules about making sure designs are original and the submitter actually has the rights to use them.) Fast-forward to summer 2016, when Snapchat rolled out a creative-tools suite on its desktop site, which allowed users who weren’t quite so computer literate to create them directly through the site without using any other software. Today, Snap is taking that one step further, rolling out a similar tool built into the app.
To create one, update your app and head to settings. Tap “On-Demand Geofilters” and then select your preferred event from a list of occasions. (I went with the nice and neutral “summer vibes” option.) You’ll be shown a list of prefab filters that you can customize by adding emoji and text. The font will match the font in the filter, rather than just the typical white Snap font you use to caption your pictures and videos. Once you’re done, follow the instructions for setting the time and date and location you’d like your filter to appear. Prices starts at $5.99 and go up from there, depending on duration and area covered.
While the in-app filters seem to give fewer opportunities for customization than the browser version, they’re also easier to use. (And certainly easier than Photoshop.) Snapchat recommends submitting your filter for review at least a day in advance, though while testing the app at 12:30 ET, it let me submit a filter for 3 ET, which seems to bode well for last-minute filters. What? Your birthday is tonight? Of course I remembered, just wait until you see what I got you.