Over the past few months, Facebook and Instagram have been trying to take their platforms in a new direction by biting off of Snapchat and adding its features to their platforms. I remember a friend asking me 2 years ago if I had Snapchat. I had heard of it but I just said no and thought to myself that it was something the kids were into and left it at that.
As someone who doesn’t like having too many apps that do the same thing, I have come to enjoy the stand-alone Facebook Messenger app. I like the flow of the UI better than the default messenger in my phone. The gifs are fun to play with and I just like the way it all looks. I disabled the default messenger and I have been using Facebook Messenger as my preferred messenger for a few months now. I don’t intend to bother with Allo or Whatsapp because I don’t know if enough of my friends are using either app to make them worth my time. I am still debating Signal. I’ll probably end up with it eventually.
Instagram introduced Stories a few months ago which started their journey into Snapchat territory. People started calling it InstaSnap because of the obvious attempt to copy Snapchat’s video capabilities. The reviews were pretty mixed. People I followed, especially celebrities, started off saying that they didn’t like it and created Instagram Stories just to say to follow them on Snapchat. A few people even said that they checked it out and would not use it unless masks were added. Something about turning yourself into a puppy or wearing a flower headdress made Snapchat the superior platform. Months later on Instagram and still no masks have been added, however they have added live streaming and that looks to be pretty popular. People that said they wouldn’t use it are posting stories or going live at least once a week which I find funny.
Facebook decided to get into the game on messenger. Facebook Messenger now has a new camera with masks similar to the Snapchat ones. I have seen tons of Snapchat masks and filters and I don’t even have the app. The ones on Snapchat look a lot better and are a bit more stable than the Facebook Messenger masks but it is a start. It’s certainly fun to play around with. There’s a lot of new stickers and the ability to add text and drawing to photos. Since Facebook owns Instagram, this probably means that the masks will make their way to the Instagram camera soon. I don’t think Snapchat is going anywhere anytime soon because people have their preferences. For now, I’ll stick to Facebook Messenger.