Snapchat, often described in the press as an "ephemeral" messaging app because its photo and video messages disappear after viewing, is rolling out a tool that will let people hold on to media they receive.
Users will now have a "Memories" section, where snaps and snap stories can be saved and searched for, the Los Angeles-based company said. People can then share the stories through personal messages, re-edit the snaps to add different captions and graphics, or put them in a separate password-protected folder.
The change is an acknowledgment that people were already saving their Snapchat creations, either by taking a screenshot or uploading them to their phone's camera rolls. By moving the activity inside the app, Snapchat's 150 million daily users will have more reason to spend time there, using it to store, search and share pictures, or short videos activities such as vacations. Snapchat was valued at $18 billion after its latest round of funding in May.
The new feature also includes Snapchat's first move into image search. Users will be able to search for simple things within photos, such as "cat" or "beach," as well as locations. The product is designed so that when people are together in person, they can easily show something that happened in their lives.
Memories also automatically show saved snaps that were sent a year earlier, building on the social media trend of sharing something from the past. Facebook has a similar feature, called "On This Day." On Instagram, it's popular to use the hashtag #TBT for "throwback Thursday" with an old photo.
-- Bloomberg News