If you own a smartphone of any kind, there's a likely chance you have a strong stance on how you're feeling about the new Snapchat update. You're either totally stressed out by the change, or you're kind of feeling like everyone just needs to move on with their lives. But if you're wondering if the new Snapchat is permanent, Snapchat's CEO has a few words for you.
Snapchat's redesign initially had several users totally shook. And although there were varying "mixed" feelings about the app's update, Snapchat's CEO, Evan Spiegel, continues to stand by it. At the Goldman Sachs Internet & Technology Conference, Spiegel addressed users' complaints, and actually stated that the buzz has proved that Snapchat achieved its goal with the new design, per Tech Crunch. According to his statement, Spiegel feels that although users initially find it weird, the reactions show what Snapchat was ultimately going for.
Spiegel continued to say that the update is receiving backlash because relearning how to use technology is difficult. But through and through, he defended the update wholeheartedly, despite all frustrations.
At the conference, Spiegel explained his feelings on user's technology frustration:
The tech is an important piece but I think the harder part you can’t get around is the time it takes to learn. You do need folks to use the product, to communicate with their friends to learn how to better provide that feed. The tech to some degree is a solved problem, the time to… to learn is a hard problem to solve. Even the complaints we’re seeing reinforce the philosophy. Even the frustrations we’re seeing really validate those changes. It’ll take time for people to adjust, but for me using it for a couple months I feel way more attached to the service.
Although things can always change, it seems like Snapchat just wants to differentiate themselves from other social apps like Instagram and Facebook, at this point. Both apps now also have a Stories feature, and although Spiegel noted that he finds this form of copying to be "flattering," he's trying to grow Snapchat, and to separate it from other forms of social media. Expanding Snapchat's Discover page and delving into its media aspect could end up being Snapchat's differentiating factor. Spiegel feels that the app's capabilities could really go anywhere at this point.
Snapchat is also starting to focus less on who they're targeting, but more on user friendliness, as well as each of its individual features. From content creation, to communication, and the media feature, Spiegel feels that each product Snapchat brings to the table is totally essential to its use and popularity. Per Tech Crunch, Spiegel stated at the conference,
We’re really focused on, how when you come into our service, do you understand stories, do you understand maps. The thing that drives the business is fundamentally the engagement around the products. That needs to be there first. Even at the time full-screen vertical video ads, no one will make those, what we’ve seen is the value delivered by getting the fundamentals right will drive the business… There’s creation, people making snaps, there’s communication which drives the frequency of use — sometimes people don’t realize, we monetize across all three behaviors.
Whether you're totally freaked out by the Snapchat update, or if you're loving it, Spiegel seems to have implied that it could be here to stay for the long run. If you find technology particularly difficult to relearn, like most people, Spiegel says that everyone will be used to it eventually. So patience, young grasshopper, we'll all be used to it in due time.
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