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18/12/2012 by

Facebook To Launch Its Own ‘Sexting App?’

Just as quickly as rumors about Facebook buying Whatsapp were debunked by All Things D, the next rumor appeared from the same source: Facebook is to launch its own Snapchat-like app, often called that sexting app. Why? Read on!

What is Snapchat?
Snapchat is an instant messaging app, in which photos, videos and messages can be sent and seen for a limited amount of time. You can take a snapshot, add a caption, select a friend you want to send your snap to, and limit viewing time to a few seconds.Snapchat will also warn you when the recipient tries to take a screenshot of your photo. Sounds like a safe way to send slightly not suitable for work content, right?

That is exactly why Snapchat got its ‘sexting app’ title. It was launched in September 2011 by a group of Stanford friends, “to share and enjoy (but not save) great conversations with friends.” Of course, the sexting function is downplayed by its founders, but it definitely goes on.

With a user base that mostly consists of young people, Snapchatters send each other 20 million photos each day. Being successful as it is, it was announced last week that Benchmark Capital, a venture capital firm that is among the early investors of Instagram, is putting 8 million dollars into the start-up. This will supposedly value the company at 50 million dollars.

So, Facebook?
With Facebook acquiring Instagram and introducing Messenger for Android, it has become clear that sending photos and instant messaging via mobile is important to Facebook as well. Facebook being interested in WhatsApp only adds fuel to the fire.

According to All Things D, Facebook is planning to release their Snapchat-like app in the coming weeks. Like Messenger and Camera, the app will be separate from the Facebook app, and will resemble Snapchat. Messages and photos can be viewed for a limited time, after which they will ‘self-destruct.’

My opinion
Facebook’s decisions haven’t been the greatest: launching a reasonably unsuccessful Camera app (and other Facebook features), not letting Instagram photos show on Twitter (a decision that was most likely made by the Facebook team), and altering Instagram’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, had people scratching their heads all over the world.

Obviously Facebook is trying to focus on mobile, and the launching of these apps will come as no surprise.

But why copy other, already wildly popular, apps? Do they think that, just because they’re Facebook, they have an advantage? We already know that doesn’t work. They couldn’t make their Camera app work, so they bought Instagram. Will this possible failure lead to another acquisition by Mark Zuckerberg?

The boys at Snapchat will most definitely be waiting for their billion dollars!

What about you?
What do you think of the rumors? Is Facebook just trying to copy successful formulas already thought of by others, because they are under pressure to focus on mobile?

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About the author
Marion aan ‘t Goor is a Social Media Consultant at Share Force One. You can connect with Marion via Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.


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