Snapchat today released its biggest update ever on Android and iOS, rolling out the ability to video chat and send text for the first time ever. And as before, nothing lasts forever.
Apps like Confide have popped up in recent months, essentially functioning as a Snapchat for text, and text is an idea the social network has been toying with for around a year.
For starters, there is no ability to see if someone is typing other than a single push notification letting you know, and you can quickly send snaps within the messaging window.
Once a message has been read, it’s automatically deleted, but you can also choose to save individual messages.
“You write a letter, you put it in an envelope, you send it to a friend, and you want to know when they get it. It’s like FedEx — they let you know when the package gets dropped off. We’re trying to get rid of these weird boxes that we put media into and get to the essence of conversation — that we’re both here. The essence of conversation is not which media format we choose to talk to each other with, so we don’t differentiate between snaps and chats. It’s just someone wanting to talk to you.”
Video calling works vastly different on Snapchat considering there is no ringing, and you show up almost instantly on your friend’s end. However, you can only see the other person if they so choose to give you their time by tapping on and holding a button.
A video chat only goes on as long as you hold down the button, and it’s setup for quick “serendipitous moments” as Spiegel puts it.
One major annoyance with text messaging is getting a notification every single time someone sends something. To fix this, Snapchat will only notify you once, even if that person was to send 50 messages in a row.
Last month, a new report found that Snapchat is now the fastest growing social network thanks to its ever increasing popularity among teens and young adults.