has another way to make money from its
disappearing-message app: pay up, and the fun stuff won’t
Snapchat app centers on ephemerality; most photos,
videos and other content shared on Snapchat become
inaccessible if not viewed within a certain time frame.
does stuff used to garnish posts—including digital
stickers called "geofilters" and animations
that Snapchat calls "lenses." For example, a
banner like "Friday the 13th" strewn across an
image, or an add-on to turn your eyes into laser guns.
Many disappear after a day or a few.
on Friday, Snapchat said users could pay 99 cents per
lens to keep the lenses they create – forever.
to Snapchat, the deal is a result of consumer demand,
like another recently introduced option for users on the
receiving end to purchase three extra views of
self-destructing messages for 99 cents.
does not reveal usage statistics for lenses, but social
media chatter and feedback from the first people to use
a lens as a marketing tool indicate that millions of
people are decorating their photos with the virtual
community really loves the lenses and have been asking
to keep them for longer than a few days," Snapchat
spokeswoman Mary Ritti said in an email. "We
created the Lens Store to give them that option."
for extra functions is a already a popular
revenue-enhancement strategy for apps in gaming, dating
and chatting. Dating app Tinder now sits among the top
20 apps by revenue in the U.S. after introducing highly
requested features — for a fee —this year. Pricing
varies, but users pay about $10 for a package that
includes the ability to search for dates around the
world rather than just nearby.
which got about 90 percent of its revenue this year from
ads, is hoping to find ways to make money from its
Messenger chat app, too. Snapchat is clearly an
inspiration in other ways. This week, Facebook began
testing a feature with users in France that optionally
self-destructs messages in Messenger after an hour.