The History of Snapchat: a Social Media Giant

The History of Snapchat: a Social Media Giant


By Avi Kishundat
Jun 28, 2018

The first version of Snapchat to hit the social media scene back in 2011 was called Picaboo. It was founded by Evan Spiegel and Bobby Murphy in the hopes of creating an app to send photos in the iOS App Store. It wasn't received well since the photos sent would disappear. They developed a solution to the problem allowing users to take screenshots of the photo before it disappeared. At the same time, a new feature was added giving users the opportunity to capture photos. The new version was named Snapchat and was marketed as a photo app for users that wanted to share pictures.

In October 2012 the Android version of Snapchat was launched and could be downloaded in the Google Play store. Within a year's time, users of this social media website were sending out approximately 20 million snaps on a daily basis. By the month of December in 2012, the numbers rose to 50 million per day. At the same time, users could use a new feature and send out 10 second videos. To create a video, users could use the same button for photo capturing as they did with pictures.

An incredibly popular feature called "Stories" was launched in October 2013. Snapshots could be posted and viewed for 24 hours by friends while brands were attracted to the concept of sharing information that could only be viewed for a certain amount of time.

Several new updates and features were introduced in 2014 including Chat. This is a messenger featuring disappearing text messages. Another new feature that captivated users was "Our Story", which allowed users to contribute their own videos and photos to public event feeds. Filters were introduced in July of that year so that users could embellish and customize their photos. Later on in the year, ads began to appear in the section called "Recent Updates". Another major addition that we saw in 2014 was the introduction of Snap Cash, allowing users to receive or send money into their banking accounts from Snapchat.

Businesses were offered different options for advertising on the site in 2015 through Discover. This was a page that showed content from different channels. Sponsored Geo-filters, Lenses and Tap-to-View were also introduced as new features during the year.

Explosive growth took place in 2016 and moving forward into 2017 with 150 million active users arriving daily to the site. Several interesting features were added Including Snapchat Memories, on-demand Geofilters, group messaging and more video ads.

Snapchat now has more than 300 million active monthly users and 187 billion daily active users and these numbers continue to grow. It's estimated that active Snapchat users open up this app at least 18 times per day on average with 400 million stories created every day. This is a huge social media website that plans to stick around for many years to come.