Snapchat is one of the fastest growing social media platforms around the world – more and more users sign up each day to exchange selfies which can only be viewed once. Almost everyone with a smartphone and an internet connection has the Snapchat application installed on their device.
Snapchat is currently one of the most highly valued private companies in the whole of the world, and has well over one million active daily users. They expect to receive tens of millions of US Dollars by the end of this year, 2015, in revenue. The company clearly feels the need to introduce new monetisation features in order to meet that goal.
In the past, users were only able to view snaps sent to them once. Then, in the year of 2013, users were able to replay one snapchat per day – just once. Now things are set to change, and people have mixed opinions on the new update. In the United States, people are going to be able to purchase replays, so that they can watch a ‘deleted,’ or ‘self-destructed,’ snap again.
The New Monetisation
Within the past week, the new in-app purchase was released. Currently, they can only be accessed by those who are living in the United States of America. Snapchat will charge users $0.99USD for a bundle of three replays. Of course, Snapchat users will still be able to use their daily free one without having to spend on the in-app purchase.
The new in-app purchases within Snapchat come alongside the likes of: location-themed digital sticker advertisements, video advertisements as well as the ability to purchase merchandise. Of course, all of this came with one of Snapchat’s biggest updates of the year – new lenses can be used to change the users face during a selfie.
All of these new monetisation features are new sources of revenue for the Venice-based start-up company.
Mixed Opinions & What it Means
Since all of the snaps that are sent via the Snapchat application are supposed to self-destruct after opening, users have had mixed opinions regarding the sale of replays.
Some users feel as if they can no longer send silly snaps, which they don’t want others to see – people will just be able to replay the snap sent via Snapchat, giving them more chance to show others and take a screenshot.
Others feel that the update is great – now they are able to view the snaps that they care about for longer than ten seconds. If they missed it, they can look at it again.
Some users also feel that they don’t need to be there at all. If the snap sent via Snapchat is important enough to care about, people should just screenshot it – there is no need to pay to see the moments people care about for another (maximum of) 30 seconds per 99 cents.
There is also a lot of debate as to if the in-app purchase within the Snapchat application is a little expensive. Snapchat agree that they are a little pricey, so maybe we can expect to see a change in the near future.
The New Lenses
A San-Fransisco based start-up company, known as Looksery Inc., initially had the idea of lenses – Snapchat have very recently acquired Looksery Inc., which is most likely why it was interpreted into the Snapchat application. The companies declined to share the amount of money that was spent in the acquisition.
When taking a selfie, users are able to press and hold their face to use the brand new lenses. There are a wide variety of lenses which can be used: silly, weird and scary are just to name a few of the types. Snapchat have been consistent with adding new ones since the initial update.
The New Trophies
Alongside the other features of the new update, Snapchat have also added trophies into the application. Users can unlock trophies by completing different tasks within the application, and they act as a milestone of social activity.
This is likely one of Snapchat’s attempts to ‘gamify’ the application – this will supposedly make users play with the application more and increase the number of users which it receives.