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Snapchat shutters Lens Store to focus on Sponsored Filters

Fans of Snapchat's 'puking rainbow' and 'heart eyes' overlays only have until Friday (8 January) to visit the Lens Store.

The app is closing the shop less than three months after its launch as it looks to encourage marketers to buy Sponsored Filters.

Lenses, which allow people to decorate their photos with special decals, were introduced at no cost for users in September 2015 before the company moved to charging for the feature, and instead began offering sponsored versions for free.

Reports circulating last year indicated that Snapchat can charge marketers anything between $450,000 to $750,000 per day to sponsor a lens. With 60 per cent of 13 to 34 year-old smart phone owners reportedly using the app, restricting Lenses to brand-only overlays has the potential to unlock a lucrative revenue stream.

Users will be able to purchase and re-use any saved Lenses after the closure, but from this week onwards the only other animations available will be branded.

Developers have been toying with new means of monetising messages sent via the service over the last 12 months. In December KFC was the first brand to use Sponsored Geofilters in stores via the Snapchat Discover platform.