The newest update to Snapchat now allows for live chatting! If you’ve become disinterested in Snapchat (although we don’t know how anyone could get tired of taking selfies), it’s time for you to update the app and let shameless self-absorption take over your life.
Here are some of the new features:
- new layout with different colors and fonts
- ability to see when friends are “live”
- option to send written messages
- option to video in real-time face-to-face
To access these features, simply swipe right on your friend’s name. By doing this, users will be able to see a snap history in an individual thread where they have the option to send chat messages, photos or videos that can be added to the conversation by tapping on the yellow square in the right hand corner. If a contact is currently online, the yellow camera button will turn blue. Like the original Snapchat, photos and videos cannot be saved; however, written text can be saved by tapping on the message once and highlighting it.
The Clog staff questions the innovativeness behind the design. The messaging and face-to-face videos seem similar to texting and FaceTiming on an iPhone — though Snapchat’s newest features are still designed for quick conversations that aren’t automatically saved. The Clog would really love it if Snapchat would add an option to organize your friends into groups to avoid having to scroll through your entire contacts list to check off every single name.
So, will these new updates increase use of the app? So far, Snapchatters seem pretty confused by these additions. We did a Twitter search for the words “snapchat update,” and here’s what came up.
As it turns out, one of the founders of Snapchat, Bobby Murphy, was raised in Berkeley. Snapchat was born in the spring of 2011 at Stanford University. Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy were fraternity brothers who envisioned making a smartphone app for people who wanted to socialize online with no lasting repercussions. After hearing anguished stories over the years about people scrambling to delete or de-tag unflattering photos before the snapshots circulated too far on social networks and appeared on search results forever, they created the self-deleting photo app.
We all love the fleeting nature of Snapchat — its in-the-moment, intimate nature. You get a quick burst of excitement, and then it’s over. No lingering or scrutinizing. While the new updates seem to follow that tenet, they do so in an awkward way. Disappearing texts, monitoring of which friends are live — it all seems like a more complicated version of Facebook chat.
We do, however, see one very important and unique benefit to the new updates: fearless drunk texting. With Dead Week upon us and end-of-semester parties abound, our intoxicated selves are anxious to share our less-than-coherent thoughts with the rest of the world. But our morning-after, regretfully hungover selves are not so proud of those thoughts. The newest version of Snapchat, complete with a vanishing text portion, allows us to toe the line between these two polar worlds and express ourselves without distressing ourselves.
Contact Martha Morrissey at [email protected].