Facebook has been copying the features of photo and video sharing app Snapchat for a long time now. But that has not deterred Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel, who finally responded to Facebook’s copycat tendencies on Wednesday.
Spiegel gave a befitting reply to Facebook CEO
Spiegel finally addressed something that we have been wanting him to address: what he thinks of Facebook copying all the best features of the photo-sharing app. According to Recode, During Snapchat parent Snap’s first earnings call as a public company, one analyst bluntly asked the CEO if the fierce competition from the social networking giant makes him afraid.
“Does Facebook scare you? Why or why not?”
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Spiegel laughed, showing just how unafraid he was, and then gave a piercing response, saying that if one wants to be a creative company, then they have to be OK with, and even “enjoy” the fact that other companies are copying their ideas. We all know which company he was talking about. Further, Spiegel said they believe that everyone is going to develop a camera strategy.
He then gave a biting message to his rival, saying, “Just because Yahoo has a search box doesn’t mean they’re Google.”
Previously, Spiegel’s fiancée, supermodel Miranda Kerr, rebuked Facebook for copying Snapchat’s features. Earlier this year, in an interview, the supermodel said that she is so appalled that they (Facebook) “cannot be innovative? Do they have to steal all of my partner’s ideas?”
Slowing user growth for Snapchat
Facebook has been copying Snapchat’s popular features for quite some time now, and both users and Snapchat are aware if it. Recently, the company released Snapchat-like camera features in Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp and its flagship app.
Last summer, Facebook’s photo-sharing app Instagram rolled out an obvious copy of Snapchat Stories and even publicized the feature’s success. Last month, Instagram announced that its Stories feature is enjoyed by more than 200 million daily active users. The number is more than the number of daily users for Snapchat itself.
Since then, Snapchat has been facing growing concerns about its ability to compete with Facebook. In addition, CEO Mark Zuckerberg made headlines last month at the company’s annual developer conference when he announced that Facebook’s new focus is on augmented reality and cameras. This announcement further fueled the rivalry between the two companies.
Again this month during the earnings call, Zuckerberg, without naming Snapchat, said, “I think we were a little bit late to the trend initially around making cameras the center of how sharing works. But I do think at this point, we’re pretty much ahead in terms of the technology that we’re building.”
Snapchat’s growth was pretty dismal in the last quarter of 2016. The company attributed the slowdown to a technical issue with Android users which it says it fixed in the first quarter of this year, notes Recode. But in the March quarter, it reported only 8 million new daily users, far fewer than the number it added last year.
After the earnings report, Snap stock dropped by as much as 25% after hours.