On September 24, 2016, Snapchat officially changed the company name to Snap Inc. In the past year, Snap has expanded their products to include Stories, Memories, and now Spectacles. This refreshed brand name reflects the recent growth and future direction of the company.
Snap Inc., “a camera company”, will encompass all products, while the app will remain Snapchat. The new homepage already reflects this update. Now the www.snapchat.com homepage hosts the job, press, and news sections while offering links to the previously existing Snapchat domain and new Spectacle domain.
The update also helps users easily find what they’re looking for:
Want information about the app? Search for Snapchat.
Want information about the new sunglasses? Search for Spectacles.
Want information about the company in general? Search for Snap Inc.
Snap Inc.’s Spectacles
In addition to its rebrand, Snap Inc. announced their first foray into the hardware world with Spectacles. Spectacles are sunglasses that let you take and share hands-free videos via Snapchat Memories. The new wearable technology connects directly to Snapchat using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth and the shareable videos will be in a new circular format.
Spectacles are similar to Google Glass in that both are wearable technology designed to make sharing fast and easy. Both glasses-based techs claim their device will eliminate the “wall” phones create when sharing experiences. Google Glass failed in that effort by making their device too complicated. Glass had a host of functions designed to replicate the entire mobile phone experience. Unlike Google Glass, Spectacles have a single use, look cool, and might actually stand a chance.
Spectacles come in three colors and feature a distinctly retro vibe that could resonate with the average Snapchat user. However, with a $129.99 price tag, they might be out of reach for many regular Snapchat users. Users can purchase the Spectacles this fall, although with the initial limited distribution there might be some competition.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR MARKETERS
By creating an umbrella company, Snap Inc. is in a position to roll out products and experiences that will aid in the constant battle with the behemoth Facebook. Snapchat already indirectly competes with Facebook’s Messenger, and Spectacle plays in the same space as Facebook’s Oculus VR purchase. While Spectacle is nowhere near the level of Oculus, it indicates that Snap Inc. has outgrown the social-sharing app space.
The addition of Spectacle represents a big potential win for connecting with audiences who communicate through photos and videos. More than 60% of 13-34-year-old smartphone users interact with Snapchat, and Snapchatters send more than 1 billion Snaps every day.
This heavy Snapchat use is a prime example of how users are changing their interaction with images and videos. “People wonder why their daughter is taking 10,000 photos a day,” says Spiegel, Snap Inc. CEO, “What they don’t realize is that she isn’t preserving images. She’s talking.” Spectacle makes communicating with videos even easier for Snapchatters, and in the future could make engaging with audiences even more meaningful for advertisers.
Marketers can expect Snap Inc. to continue to play a larger role in the social, camera, and tech product space in the upcoming years. Snap Inc. products continue to have success with younger audiences, particularly users 12-34, but with the higher price tag and product expansions Snap Inc. could experience growth with older demographics by the end of 2017.
Learn more about Snapchat advertising opportunities.