Snapchat Facts

Snapchat: History, Development, Features and Controversies

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Snapchat is one of the biggest social media platforms with billions of users worldwide. It is primarily a multimedia messaging app, created by Evan Spiegel, Robert Murphy and Reggie Brown former students at Stanford University. The app was thoroughly developed by Snap Inc. originally known as Snapchat Inc.

The basic idea behind creating Snapchat was privacy. People only have access to pictures and messages for a short period, and then they disappear. It was the main reason why it got such praise throughout the world.

According to a recent survey, there are 186 million daily users of Snapchat, though the highest number of users were at the 2nd quarter of 2018 with the app was peaking at 188 million users. The revenue of Snapchat, on the other hand, is constantly increasing since the day it launched officially. Currently, it stands at 297.7 million U.S. Dollars.  Even Spiegel, the main person behind the execution of the idea of the company, is its CEO, and under his supervision, Snapchat evolved from a basic idea to a company earning millions of dollars every year.

Snapchat Official Websitehttps://www.snapchat.com/

Social

  • Snapchat Twitter has total 2.11 million followers with only 18 lucky accounts being followed by it.
  • Snapchat did have a Facebook account but it unpublished it in 2016 without any notice. It’s no longer available now.

History

  • According to documents, it was Reggie Brown brought up the idea of an application with disappearing photos, messages, and videos to Evan Spiegel. Brown was unsure if his idea is worth a shot or not so he came to Even who had experience of handling a working business.
  • Brown and Spiegel then brought Robert Murphy on board because he had experience in computer programs. Murphy then became the lead programmer of Snapchat.
  • The three of them worked together for seven months and came up with a prototype app called “Picaboo” on the IOS operating system on July 8, 2011.
  • The full version of the app was then called Snapchat, and it was released on September 2011. This was when the company started working on the fixes and stability of the app on different devices.
  • Reggie Brown the person who came up with the idea of Snapchat was expelled out of the company before the app was launched. They tried to get rid of everything pitched in by Reggie, but they decided to keep the Mascot designed by Brown.
  • In 2014 Brown tried to re-negotiate the terms of the partnership but the lawyers of Snapchat (Even Spiegel and Robert Murphy) went back at him, and the court decided that Brown did not have a contribution both in terms of creativity and value. Thus, he has no right over Snapchat.
  • Later they agreed on an amount of $157.7 million for Brown, and he was then credited as the author of Snapchat.

Development

  • During its early few years, Snapchat was just one of the hundreds online messaging apps found on the app store. Though it had a better implementation of privacy, most people at that time did not care much about the privacy.
  • Two thousand twelve was the year when Snapchat became the new social media trend. It had evolved from just being a messaging app by then. In their first blog post, Even Spiegel said that” Snapchat isn’t about capturing the traditional Kodak moment. It’s about communicating with the full range of human emotion — not just what appears to be pretty or perfect.”
  • During May 2012, 25 Snaps (the images taken using the Snapchat’s app) were being sent per second. Until November, users only on the IOS platform had sent over a billion photos with 20 million photos being shared every day.
  • Finally, the Android version of the app released on October 29, 2012. Then it got the popularity it needed in developing countries since the dominant platform in these countries in Android.
  • Due to the immense amount of load on the servers, people were unable to send snaps in real time. It was fixed when they released the Snapchat version 5.0 dubbed “Banquo.”
  • The new not only resolved the problem created by the huge number of users but also it added usability improvements in the overall design and UI of the app. According to the devs, this update started the new design of the app.
  • The results of improvements and the Android port came during March 2015 when the company reported that people are sending 2 billion videos every day using Snapchat which reached 6 billion in November.
  • In September 2016 Snapchat Inc. was renamed as Snap Inc. and the company launched their first Spectacles with a built-in camera that can record a 10 second video at a time.

Features

  • Originally Snapchat was just a multimedia messaging app that looked after the privacy of its users by saving them from being photoshopped or by removing their pictures from the platform after a certain time.
  • It evolved as the community that started using Snapchat evolved. Many features were added side by side. The flagship feature of Snapchat called the Snap Story was added way after the launch of the original app. The Story saves your photos or video that you post for a day for your followers to see. It resets after 24 hours. Almost every other social media app has copied the Snap Stories now, but the original snap story is by far the best.
  • There were no public accounts at the start as the app got bigger the cost also increases. So, the devs came up with the commercial accounts or premium accounts. It’s the same, but you have to pay to watch the content.
  • Our favorite filters and lenses were also added afterward. It helps users to customize their snaps by adding different filters, stickers or by adding captions. It was a fun way to characterize the images that’s why people loved it, and it has been going strong.
  • The most common use of Snapchat other than adding stories is maintaining streaks with friends. It was present in the original app, but it was not as elaborate and as fun as it is now. It has now become a way to characterize your friends. The friend with the most consistent streak is called a best friend and as it progresses the app assigns different emojis representing the strength of the friendship.
  • Discover is the most recent addition in the features department. It uses AI to track the searches and stories you like and present you with somewhat similar stories of other people and ads from the commercial accounts.

Controversies

  • Whenever a social media app becomes immensely popular, the security firms try to find certain mistakes of these companies to exploit them. Many such incidents result in scandals. Snapchat was exploited in December 2013 when Australian security firm caught a flaw in the security API of Snapchat. Due to the exploit Hackers were able to bypass the security system and the data of almost 4.6 million users was leaked into a website.
  • Snapchat had a feature called “Lens” to record the speed of the person recording the snap. In September 2015 an 18-year-old got caught in an accident when she was using this feature to gauge the speed of her car. Many lawsuits were fired against Snapchat, and the company ultimately removed the feature from their app.
  • According to an ex-employee, the CEO of Snapchat said during a hearing of a lawsuit, “Snapchat is only for rich, and it is not for poor countries like India or Spain.” A huge campaign by the hashtag Uninstall Snapchat erupted, and people from several parts of the world started to uninstall Snapchat and gave it a poor rating on the app markets.
  • Earlier this year a poll about Rihanna was posted stating “Would you rather punch Chris Brown or Slap Rihanna?” Rihanna retweeted that Snapchat was insensitive to domestic abuse and violence and urged her fans to uninstall the app.

 

 

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