The Snapchat redesign has finally been revealed, a few weeks after Snap Inc. said that the app needed an overhaul to make it easier to use for people of all ages.
Snapchat has been a revolutionary app, with tech companies such as Facebook, Google, and Microsoft copying some of its features. Snap will now look to continue being a trailblazer with the Snapchat overhaul.
Old Snapchat vs New Snapchat
In an official post, Snap said that the new version of the Snapchat app "separates the social from the media." According to the company, there is now a need for this because of the blurred lines in social media. Mixing the posts of friends with content from publishers in a single feed has resulted in some strange products, such as fake news.
In the current form of Snapchat, the first page upon opening the app is the camera page, where users can take snaps that they can share with their friends. Swiping left from the camera page brings up the user's friends list, while swiping right shows a feed that combines the Stories from their friends with sponsored content.
The new Snapchat will retain the camera page as the landing page upon opening the app. However, when swiping left, users will see chats, messages, and Stories from their friends that will be sorted with a new "best friends" algorithm. Meanwhile, swiping right will reveal the new Discover page that starts with content from publishers that users are subscribed to, followed by other content that the user might be interested in.
Social on the left and media on the right, following what Snap said regarding the separation of Snapchat's two major aspects.
Are Snapchat Changes Really Necessary?
Long-time Snapchat users may already be accustomed to all the intricacies of the app, raising the question on why an overhaul is needed in the first place.
Snapchat's userbase and revenue have not grown as fast as expected since the Snap IPO last March. This is partly because Facebook has copied some of Snapchat's most popular features, in a bid to keep users from moving to Snapchat.
The new Snapchat moves the app further away from the traditional model of social media, as seen on Facebook. The separation of the social aspect and the media aspect of Snapchat will give the app a unique identity. In addition, all the content in the Discover page will be vetted by a Snapchat team before they are published, a far cry from Facebook and Google where content can be distributed without approval, leading to the proliferation of fake news.
Whether the new Snapchat can retain its current users while attracting new ones remains to be seen, but the potential for the app to break new ground in social media is certainly there.