Ever since it was launched in 2011, the multimedia image messaging mobile app Snapchat has operated almost unchanged, barring a few additions to its social media features over the years. Starting November 2017, the app’s parent company Snap Inc. has started work on a major revamp of the way its control scheme works. When it became available for update this February however, Snapchat users were turned off by the new user interface and confusing presentation of posts. Following a massive social media backlash, Snap Inc. announced that they have heard the complaints and released a new Snapchat update addressing them.
CNN reports that Snap Inc. on Tuesday, February 20, released a follow-up patch to their Snapchat redesign update that has been anything but welcome to longtime app users. The new fix tries to resolve the navigation difficulties encountered in the revamp, which had disgruntled Snapchatters signing a petition on Change.org urging the parent company to remove the major updates. Over a million complainants have since signed the petition. The newly-released patch hopes to better organize the layout of Snapchat posts received by a user from either his personal friends or celebrities.
On a statement sent to the Change.org petition, a Snap Inc. spokesperson replied, “We hear you, and appreciate that you took the time to let us know how you feel. We completely understand the new Snapchat has felt uncomfortable for many.” To that end, the emergency patch adds tabs to better indicate specific Snapchat Stories, the photos and videos shared on the platform by a user’s contacts that disappear permanently after 24 hours. Following the revamp that divided posts from friends and publishers/celebrities into separate pages, users found themselves unable to find stories from friends they do not interact with regularly, causing them to be buried under regular contacts.
The app revamp that started the mess was at the initiation of Snapchat founder and CEO Evan Spiegel. And while the backlash to the changes caught them off-guard, Spiegel notes that many of the complaints from the update were actually validations of his reason why the app’s navigation interface needed changing. In a way, Snap Inc.’s quick action from their user base’s feedback is something of a positive compared to Facebook, which did a major revamp of their social media platform in 2008 and kept it since in spite of loud complaints. The tab update for Snapchat was initially made available for iOS, with an Android patch following in the coming weeks.
Photo courtesy of thesun.co.uk