Since it launched in 2011, Snapchat has been the photo sharing app we all know and love. However Instagram has been around longer, the creators seem to be taking a page out of the book of their competitor. Are they becoming the new Snapchat?
When it first appeared on the App Store, Snapchat was a revolution. Unlike other image sharing apps, Snapchats were only ever viewable for a certain length of time. That meant users could share embarrassing, incriminating, and even downright unflattering images with their mates – safe in the knowledge that those selfies would never resurface, to be seen by their crush, future employer, or – worst case scenario – mum.
Around 10 million continue to use the app on a daily basis to enjoy this feature. There’s also been a number of cool updates, including the ever-popular Lenses feature, which we have to thank for all of those flower-crown selfies.
But one update, first seen in 2014, completely transformed the face of the app – and apparently, social media as we knew it…
Snapchat Stories allow us to catch glimpses of each other’s days on a constant basis. Stories can be viewed by every person on a user’s friends list, and are available for 24 hours – but, much like private Snaps, a Story will disappear entirely once its time slot is up.
The result is a feature that retains Snapchat’s fun, casual, and in-the-moment vibe, whilst taking image sharing on social media to the next level.
For Snapchat, the Stories update was a definite game-changer – and that didn’t go unnoticed by its biggest rival.
An update on Instagram similar to Snapchat
Instagram, another photo sharing app with millions of users, has peacefully coexisted alongside Snapchat for over five years.
But in August 2016, the Instagram team launched a new feature. Users would now be able to publish photos and videos to a feed, which would be viewable for a maximum of 24 hours. They would be known as ‘Stories’ – wait, sound familiar?
It should. Instagram’s newest update is an exact carbon copy of our favourite Snapchat feature – and that’s only the beginning…
Instagram’s also planning to launch a rival to Snapchat’s ‘curated Stories’: a brand new channel on the app’s Explore page, broadcasting the biggest worldwide events, from sports games to arena concerts.
So what’s next?
Traditionally, the two apps have covered very different corners of social media. Whilst Instagram reigned over the carefully filtered, Insta-ready images, Snapchat’s domain was very much fugly selfies and puppy-dog lenses.
But with Instagram looking to Snapchat for inspiration with its newest updates, has that all changed?
Now, we can head to one app for both aspects of photo-sharing. Whether users want casual glimpses at everyday life, or aesthetic grids packed with cityscapes and avocado-on-toast, Instagram – these days – has it all.
But how will Snapchat react to Instagram playing copycat? Only time will tell…
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