Self-destructing photo-sharer Snapchat has been updated today with a couple of major new features. Previously you'd have to take a photo if you wanted to send any kind of message through the service — now text chat is accessible by swiping right from the main camera view, then swiping again on the person you want to chat with. As you might expect, message history is wiped when you swipe away from the conversation, though you can choose to save individual messages for later if they're important. But text chat is only part of the new Snapchat.

When both you and the person you're chatting with have the conversation open, you'll see a blue notification button which you can use to launch instantly into a video call using either the front or rear camera. Naturally, videos are just as ephemeral as everything else Snapchat does, and video streams can be either one-way or two-way. Both features represent a significant expansion of the apps' feature set, while maintaining the ephemeral nature of the Snapchat messages.

You'll find a quick demo of the new features in Snapchat's (non-self-destructing) teaser video, above. Updates to the new version are rolling out from today on Android and iOS

Source: Snapchat


Reader comments

Snapchat updated with text chat and video calling


Snapchat was great because it was simple, and to the point. Now it's turning into every other messaging app.

a pretty convoluted form of every other messaging app, might i add.

hidden buttons appearing on click.. gallery option only for replies, and not compose.. no send button in chat, you have to use your keyboard... it's all kinds of fucked up UX. at least before when you couldn't do anything, it was (relatively) simple.

I'm with you jakeuten. I double click the upgrade button and it just cuts to app store and it doesn't update

me too it didnt work but when i send a pic for snapchat it updated from it self but i prefer u dont update, snapchat before is better

Fail on Snapchat's part. I hit "double tap to upgrade" and the update wasn't even available to me on the Play Store. Perhaps unveiling the new features via snapchat wasn't a good idea... Too many logistical details to nail down.

Yes I've noticed that ... That's the only downfall with the new update. I want that option back in the settings to clear my feed.

Does anybody else notice the issue of not being able to live chat even when both people are online ?

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Ah yes, the preferred app of people up to no good gets even more features allowing people to leave as little trace behind as possible.

Drug dealers and other sorts of shady people can rejoice today.

Actually, drug dealers and users shouldn't be sending any illicit images on here. No warrant necessary to go into Snapchat's servers and retrieve any unopened images.

Is there really any reasonable worthwhile use for Snapchat?

I am curious what examples users can share. I can already send photos, videos and messages through SMS and MMS apps, so what would Snapchat really offer that the other options do not already?

Personally for me Snapchat is just a really fun way to share moments with my closest friends. Sure I can just send pics and videos through text, but the option to easily add filters and draw on the image from within the app makes it a bit more convenient. Not to mention how easy it is to send to multiple ppl at once. But most importantly there are things you witness that you have to share IMMEDIATELY with your friends and pulling up the camera app, then going to the gallery then selecting share through MMS then searching for the recipient(s) is a little too tedious for those blink-and-you'll-miss-it moments

The chat feature lets you send pics that are saved on your phone. Interestingly the app seems to freeze when trying to send a photo saved from Snapchat...

It doesn't work with the 4th generation, not even on iPod, it has to be the 5th which I find stupid, I hope they fix that because my friend is giving me her iPhone4

I like the idea but the original was better
But for my update no one can vid chat me they all are offline even know we are chatting trying to figure it out..
Vid chat doesn't work for me...

Why can't I save my own pictures before I send them out? I used to all the time, just upgraded to the S5 and now whenever I take a picture and click the save image option it says failed. Also, why does my camera look so distorted? Any feedback/advice or whatever would be GREATLY appreciated!! Thanks! :)

It just started to work, I can save pictures. But the camera still has a weird look about it whenever I'm taking front facing pics... like I'm using a fish eye lens. After reading different reviews online about the S5, it seems to be the camera on the phone. Hopefully with the next update that changes!

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