If Snapchat was getting a bit too cluttered for your liking, you aren’t the only one. Snap Inc., the company behind the popular social network, announced a redesign on Wednesday that streamlines the user experience (UI) by splitting it in two. Now, friends and third-party content inhabit distinct, separate sections of the application.
“Separating social from media has allowed us to build the best way to communicate with friends and the best way to watch great content – while addressing many of the problems that plague the Internet today,” Snapchat said in a press release. “The new Snapchat separates the social from the media. This means that the Chats and Stories from your friends are on the left side of Snapchat, and the Stories from publishers, creators, and the community are on the right.”
It’s a palpable change to the way Snapchat works. When you fire up the application, you’re instantly taken to the camera portion of the app. A swipe to the left of the camera shows content from your friends and other users who you communicate with every day, and a swipe to the right pulls up Snapchat’s Discover feature. It’s the tab where content from publishers, content creators, and the community live, and it’s personalized to your tastes and preferences. (Your subscriptions and Snapchat Stories you’re following are at the top.)
“Until now, social media has always mixed photos and videos from your friends with content from publishers and creators,” Snapchat said. “While blurring the lines between professional content creators and your friends has been an interesting Internet experiment, it has also produced some strange side-effects (like fake news) and made us feel like we have to perform for our friends rather than just express ourselves.”
Snapchat’s also improved the Friends page. Starting today, your friends are listed in the order you want to talk to them.
It’s a radical change for Snapchat, but it’s probably for the best. Social networks started a medium for folks to keep track of and socialize with the people they know, but they’ve become one-stop shops for friends, celebrities, company, political, entertainment, and music updates. It’s made it increasingly difficult to find the content you care about.
It’s imposslbe to put the genie back in the bottle — we’re used to social networks that do just about everything. But Snachat’s move seems like a step in the right direction. Hopefully, others follow suit.
Source: Snap Inc.