Snapchat is splitting down the middle to separate friends from the users that don’t know your name. On Wednesday, November 29, the app launched a major redesign that puts social on a left swipe and media on a right swipe. The Snapchat redesign, which CEO Evan Spiegel said “it is designed to make the platform easier to use without diverting from Snapchat’s original focus on visual chats with friends”.
A Single Swipe
Snapchat still opens up right to the camera, making it fast to take a quick snapshot, and the program still relies on swiping to navigate through different options. With the redesign, however, swiping from the left opens up options for chats and Stories from your personal friends.
Seprate section for the publishers
A swipe from the right, on the other hand, contains the public Snapchat accounts. On this menu, the public accounts you follow are listed first and foremost, while the remainder is designed to help you find new content.
On the publisher side (right swipe), Stories from public profiles are also tailored to each user based on algorithms. With Stories you choose to follow at the top, followed by the algorithms personalized suggestions.
New “best friends” algorithm
Despite the split, both sides will use artificial intelligence to tailor the experience to each individual user. For the friends’ menu, Snapchat is using a “best friends” algorithm to create a dynamic Friends page — programming that figures out who you like to talk to most and when you like to talk to them.
Splitting friends from public accounts is an interesting move and one that’s designed to bring more users to the app. The update could help simplify the process of figuring out how to use Snapchat for new users. While the human review process could help avoid some of the problems social networks have faced this year from fake news to inadvertently allowing racist ads.
Snapchat said that by splitting the social from the media and using both algorithms and human reviewers, the platform becomes a new type of social media that avoids some of the issues plaguing the largest networks such as fake news
The updated Snapchat began rolling out Wednesday, November 29.