One of the features that Microsoft has announced as part of its new Windows Phone 8 operating system was the possibility to come up with custom applications that would take advantage of a handset’s camera to deliver great new experiences to users, called Lenses.
The company provides third-party developers with the possibility to create their own Lenses for users to enjoy, and is now offering some more info on what Lenses involve for developers.
With only a few Lenses apps available for Windows Phone 8 at the moment, developers are provided with the possibility to innovate, Microsoft notes.
“The camera application space is currently a hotbed of innovation; our Lenses feature makes Windows Phone a compelling place to build these types of apps,” Microsoft’s Larry Lieberman notes in a blog post.
From a user’s perspective, Lenses offer the possibility to access photo manipulation apps that present new options when launching the camera on their devices.
And with a lens space in the Windows Phone 8 interface, users are also being provided with direct access to Lenses apps that are available for download through the Windows Phone Store.
Microsoft has already launched a series of lens applications for the new mobile operating system, so that users could take advantage of some features of the OS, such as get instant translations through framing foreign words in the camera viewfinder, courtesy of Bing Translator.
There is also Cam Wow, which offers real-time camera filters and effects, as well as ReadyClick, an app designed to enable people to use their voice to activate the camera shutter.
Developers interested in building applications for Windows Phone 8 to tap into some of the capabilities that Lenses can offer have a series of resources they can take advantage of:
Introduction to Lenses, on Inside Windows Phone
PM Eric Bennet’s great talk from BUILD 2012 on Building Lens Applications
The Lens Design Guidelines from the MSDN Library
A great Lens code sample in the MSDN Code Gallery
The segment on camera use from the WP8 Jumpstart module 9 (“Using Phone Resources”)
Overview of Lens content on the MSDN Library
Simply access the above links to learn a few more details on what Lenses could offer both to Windows Phone 8 developers and to their users.