By: Tim Van Duyne
Team Snapchat surprised everyone late Wednesday night with a video showing all the cool, new features the latest update has in store. The two big additions are a) the ability to live facetime with one of your snapchat friends and b) you now have the option to instant message your friends.
These new additions will most definitely add a spark to an app that already provides a super fun and easy way to communicate with your friends. All you have to do is swipe right on a friend’s name to bring up the instant message screen. It’s quick and easy. When you’re in the chat screen you can send messages as if you were texting a friend. Although, once you leave the instant message screen all of your messages will be deleted (so Snapchat is staying with its tradition of quickly erasing snaps and messages).
The facetime feature is really simple, but at the same time innovative. So how does it work? When you’re in a chat with a friend there’s a little yellow rectangle in the lower-right corner that will turn blue when that person is also in the chat screen. Once both parties are in the same chat, the only thing left to do is press and hold the blue box to bring up the facetime feature. So when you’re in the facetime screen you can move the little circle viewer (the view that your friend will see) all around the screen, and you can even flip the camera while in this mode.
Snapchat has become a very fun, interesting and easy way to communicate with friends and family. But now with these two additions the app can really challenge Facebook as being one of the best ways to stay in touch with friends and family from all over the world.
Facebook still has its usefulness. Users are able to create permanent photo albums and easily share links and videos. It’s great for event planning and scheduling. Still though, the major advantage Snapchat has over Facebook is the ability to share pictures, video and messages in real time, with the press of your thumb. With Facebook, it usually takes a good 12-16 hours for someone to upload his or her photos from the night before. Snapchat is instant. Instant is good.
I’m not saying Snapchat has surpassed Facebook, but it is definitely on the upswing, while Facebook is on the downswing. Facebook has become boring. The feeds are full of ads and website links, sprinkled in with a few of your friends statuses.
Snapchat is simple, fresh, innovative and sleek. It’s exactly what the younger generation wants, and in the future I could see the baby boomers starting to snap their life away too.
Watch out Zuckerberg.