Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is all set to launch its Slingshot app today, sources familiar with the development told Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac. The social networking giant had “accidentally” launched the Snapchat rival on the App Store in a few countries on June 9. But Facebook promptly pulled from the store after realizing the mistake.
Will Facebook succeed with its second attempt?
Slingshot is Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s second attempt to challenge Snapchat. The company had launched Poke app in 2012, which failed miserably and disappeared from the app stores last month. The new standalone app allows users to share photos and videos with caption and drawings. The recipient can’t view it until they acknowledge that they want to view the message. And yes, the videos and photos disappear after you’ve viewed them. The source said that Facebook may choose to hold back the release to a later date if any last minute issue pops up.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) had reportedly offered to buy Snapchat for $3 billion in November last year. But Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel declined the offer, leaving the messaging service vulnerable to competition. Now, only after the release of Slingshot can Snapchat see whether it was a good idea to reject Facebook’s offer.
Differences between Facebook’s Slingshot and Snapchat
The key thing that differentiates Slingshot from Snapchat and other photo sharing apps like Taptalk is that you’ll have to send your friend a message back before you can actually “unlock” their messages. That means recipients can’t view the ‘Sling’ they’ve received until they send back their own ‘Sling.’ The technique is aimed at encouraging users to check in with their friends about what they are looking at or doing. When you view the message after unlocking it, you can send your reaction to the sender by simply tapping the React button. Unlike Snapchat, Slingshot allows you to respond to messages at your convenience.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) shares fell 0.48% on Monday to close at $64.19.