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Facebook Newsroom
new challenger

Facebook's new messaging app is Snapchat with a strange twist

After failing with Poke and seeing its $3 billion offer for Snapchat rejected, Facebook is hoping its new app Slingshot will fare better.

FACEBOOK HAS OFFICIALLY launched its Snapchat style app Slingshot in the US, more than a week after it was released prematurely on the App Store.

The app, which is available on iOS and Android, will allow users to take photos and send them to their friends, and edit them by drawing or adding text. Once it’s received and viewed, the image or video will disappear within a set timeframe.

The catch is you can’t view a photo or video until you send one back to the person who sent it, unlike other apps which allow you to view without responding.

While there are many similarities between it and Snapchat, the team behind the app are keen to stress that Slingshot offers a different experience.

Photos and videos that don’t stick around forever allow for sharing that’s more expressive, raw and spontaneous. We can connect the same way we like to live: in the moment. We’ve enjoyed using Snapchat to send each other ephemeral messages and expect there to be a variety of apps that explore this new way of sharing.
With Slingshot, we saw an opportunity to create something new and different: a space where you can share everyday moments with lots of people at once.

Much like Paper, which is a reimagined version of the Facebook newsfeed, Slingshot will only be available in the US for now. Both it and Paper were designed by Facebook’s Creative Labs, a section of the company that’s dedicated to creating new apps for the company.

The company previously tried to muscle in on Snapchat’s territory by releasing Poke in December 2012. Although it was the most downloaded app at the time of its release, it failed to catch on with users and was eventually removed from the App Store in May 2014.

Facebook also tried to purchase Snapchat for $3 billion in November 2013, but was rejected.

Slingshot / YouTube

Read: Snapchat’s next feature will let users publicly share photos at events >

Read: The most popular messaging service among Irish adults isn’t WhatsApp or Viber… >

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