Snapchat is becoming excessively popular and Facebook is not liking the competition they present. Reportedly, Facebook is working on their stand-alone camera app that is very much like Snapchat.
According to a recent report by Wall Street Journal, Facebook’s main aim behind this feature would be to “encourage 1.6 billion users to create, and share, more photos and videos”.
A prototype developed by Facebook’s “friend-sharing” team bears a striking resemblance to Snapchat. The app opens up to a camera allowing people to share pictures or videos with their friends. Live streaming may also be a feature. But the app is still in its early stages and some people believe it may never see the light of day. Over the years Facebook has attempted several times to launch their own camera app. They launched Facebook Camera and Facebook Poke in 2012, Slingshot and Bolt in 2014, Riff in 2015. Most of these weren’t even released in USA. Those that were released, were eventually pulled out.
The main reason Facebook is even thinking of building their stand-alone app is to boost photo-sharing. While millions of people will log onto Facebook every day and spend a good amount of time scrolling their timeline, not all of them are sharing details of their life. On the other hand Snapchat boasts 8 billion video views per day. And this has got Facebook very worried. The recent rollout of live streaming is also a way to boost user activity. Facebook is reportedly paying groups with huge followings like BuzzFeed, Huffington Post to promote live-streaming.
The following graph shows that Facebook had 4 billion views per day in April 2015. Snapchat had only half. Now fast forward one year, Snapchat has closed that very significant gap by catching upto Facebook. While Facebook currently has over 1 billion daily active users and Snapchat has a mere 150 million, the latter is the one growing at a much faster pace.