Snapchat is now officially a publicly listed company on the stock exchange. The initial public offering of Snap Inc. was indeed quite successful. It raised around $2.5 billion for Snapchat’s mother company. Now there is one additional social app listed on the stock exchange. But what exactly is the difference between Facebook and Snapchat? After a successful IPO will Snapchat become the next Facebook?
Snapchat is about Communicating with your Camera
Snapchat states it very clearly over and over again: Snap Inc. is a camera company. Now the term camera is a very broad term. It might describe a camera manufacturer, a brand, or anything else related to cameras. But the camera is indeed Snapchat’s main differentiation point to Facebook with its products Instagram and WhatsApp. Snapchat focusses on the communication via photos and videos.
If you open the Snapchat app the first screen you see is the camera. It is ready to snap and record a video. It encourages you to communicate and create content. Instagram and Facebook are running a different approach. If you open Facebook or Instagram the first thin you will see is an endless news-feed. Both apps are pretty much optimised for consuming. You can literally scroll endlessly for hours through your feed without communicating at all. Instagram and Facebook are more focussing consuming over communicating. That is a big differentiation.
Post something on Facebook or Instagram or send photos and videos via FB Messenger or WhatsApp and they will never disappear. Snapchat is different. Send snaps (photos, videos, texts) to a friend and they will disappear right after you finished the conversation. This might remind you of phone calls. Yes, the good old phone calls. When you called someone in ancient times the conversation was not recorded and not accessible for you after it was finished. The same is true for Snapchat – your conversation will disappear after it took place. That is what I think makes Snapchat special in comparison with Facebook, Instagram, or WhatsApp.
Let’s see how Snap Inc. will use its new capital to improve it’s vision of a camera company. I think they will push into the direction of augmented reality communication. Instead of keeping log of all your conversations they will work on integrating an exciting communication tool directly into your life.
Click here to read why I think Snap Inc. is more an AR company than a social network.