With the release of Snapchat Web, the platform is expanding its platform beyond smartphones for the first time, bringing capabilities like snapping, messaging, and video calling to desktop computers.
You may use Snapchat Web to send private messages, make calls to friends, and check in with your Snapchat account. It’s the first significant feature introduction since Snap launched its paid tier in June, and initially the web platform will only be accessible to customers of Snapchat Plus. The US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand subscribers will have priority access. Only Google’s Chrome browser and not Apple’s Safari will be able to use Snapchat. You can learn how to get a Snapchat Plus free trial here.
Snapchat Web: Snap, chat and video call
Although Snapchat was designed as a visual-first messaging software, Nathan Boyd, the head of messaging product, claims that an online version makes sense because more of its users use desktop computers. With Snap’s AR Lenses soon available, Snapchat Web allows users more room to chat and phone in the same window. Boyd stated Snap hopes to gradually expand the number of its items available online as people use computers more frequently as a result of the pandemic and the upcoming start of the new school year.
Users must go to web.snapchat.com and log in using their Snapchat username and password to access Snapchat Web. After that, you will automatically be required to do two-step verification on your phone. Your discussions can resume where they left off on mobile once you launch Snapchat Web. Your Bitmoji will show up in chats using a laptop when you use Snapchat on a desktop to let other users know that you are accessing the chat through Snapchat Web. A privacy screen is also included in the web experience, which conceals the Snapchat window whenever you click away to perform another action.
Messages posted using Snapchat Web will be wiped automatically after 24 hours, much like the mobile app experience. Additionally, the business claims that Snapchat for Web would stop users from taking screenshots. Snap is aware that the product isn’t ideal and that users can still shoot pictures on the phone’s screen.
Although Snap positions itself primarily as an AR platform for its Lenses, private, transient messaging and calling are remain the main use cases for the program. In direct rivalry with Discord and WhatsApp from Meta, which is also available on desktop, is the Snapchat Web. Boyd claims that every month, 100 million users use Snapchat to make calls to one another, talking for an average of more than 30 minutes per day, and that people often communicate with one another before deleting the app.
“We are always looking for ways to meet our community where they are. It just felt like something that was an unmet opportunity,” said Boyd.
The fact that the web expansion was first made available to subscribers shows how seriously the corporation is treating its premium tier as an additional revenue stream. Since leadership has warned that revenue growth is slowing, Snap is under more pressure than ever to monetize its 332 million daily active users, which is more people than Twitter. The goal is to keep devoted users coming back even though Snap’s primary source of income—ads—will initially be absent from the desktop version.
“With so many in our community spending more time online, whether it is for remote learning or working, streaming or just plain browsing – we saw a huge opportunity to make it easier for our community to stay connected throughout their day, and we cannot wait to bring our favorite fundamental Snapchat capabilities to the web,” the company adds. Snap launched Snapchat+ subscription service months ago and now this is their next step.