Technology

Redesigned Snapchat App Separates Friends From Publishers

Snap announced earlier this month that a redesigned Snapchat app will start rolling out on December 4, and today, CEO Evan Spiegel revealed more information about the changes that are coming. He paints the new changes as separating the “social” part of social media from the “media” part.

redesigned Snapchat app
TeroVesalainen / Pixabay

In the redesigned Snapchat app, users will find posts from their friends on one side and posts from distributors and publishers on the other. This will certainly differentiate it from Facebook and Twitter, both of which mix all these posts into a single jumble, making it easy to miss things from your real friends.

Will the redesigned Snapchat app prevent fake news?

In a post describing the redesigned Snapchat app on Wednesday, the Snap team called the trend of combining content from friends and professional publishers and creators “an interesting Internet experience.” The company also said that this mixture has resulted in “some strange side-effects,” such as fake news. That could be an indirect dig at Facebook, which has been plagued by fake news for some time. Snap also said that missing content from friends and professional creators made them feel the need to perform for friends, although it’s hard to imagine how the new Snapchat format will be any different in this respect.

The redesigned Snapchat app will place Chats and Stories from friends on the left side and Stories from publishers, creators and the community on the right.

Dynamic Friends page coming to redesigned Snapchat too

Snap is also introducing what it calls the “dynamic Friends page,” which lists friends according to how users communicate with them. The company explained that its algorithm will list friends in the order that users want to talk to them, solving the problem of having to scroll through a long list of Chats to locate the correct person.

The Discover page on the right side of the camera in the redesigned Snapchat app includes Stories from professional content creators. Any contributors that users subscribe to will be listed at the top of the Discover page, and then Stories from other contributors that might interest users will be listed underneath them. Snap will use algorithms to personalize the Stories that appear on each user’s Discover page, and the company employs curators to review and approve any Stories that get promoted.

The redesigned Snapchat app will still open to the camera, just as it does now.

Snap stock tumbles as investors remain unimpressed

Snap stock initially ticked higher after the new details about the Snapchat redesign were released, but it didn’t take long for the shares to erase the gains and tumble into the red. Snap stock declined by more than 1% in intraday trading, falling as low as $13.25 on Wednesday.

The design of the Snapchat app has been criticized as confusing quite a lot, but Snap management probably hopes that switching to a feed-based system that’s similar to other social media networks will make it easier to use. It also looks like an attempt to boost monetization efforts and improve targeting for ads. Nonetheless, investors seem unimpressed by the redesigned Snapchat app so far, based on what Snap stock is doing.

A representative from Snap said in a statement that they will be rolling out the redesigned app to a small percentage of users this week ahead of a broader rollout starting December 4.