The battle for messaging apps just got more heated with Tuesday's announcement from Snapchat. The app was made famous for sexting because it allowed users to send whatever they wanted to their very special friends, knowing it would be deleted from ever being seen again.
However, it quickly grew up as many news outlets, including Digital Trends, began using the service to share more worthwhile and newsworthy information. Now the social network has totally revamped its messaging platform, giving you more forms of communication along with the ability to seamless transition between them.
Chat 2.0 continues Snapchat's tradition of being the "best way to communicate -- second only to hanging out face-to-face." Chat 1.0 was all about letting you know your friend was listening, but Chat 2.0 kicks it up a notch by offering more ways to communicate. That includes video, audio, GIFs, stickers, and of course traditional texts.
Now you can swipe right on a friend to open a chat. From there you can press the video icon, allowing you to send a Video Note or make a Video Call. The Video Notes option lets you record up to a 10-second video with audio that loops like a GIF. When selecting a Video Call, your friend can either ignore, join, or watch you.
Similarly, the phone icon allows you to either send a Voice Note or make an Audio Call.
If you're not in the mood to talk or be seen, you can always tap on the smiley face icon and browse a database of 200 different stickers that you can send instead.
Of course, sometimes traditional texting makes the most sense, and you have that option as well.
What makes Chat 2.0 very cool is the fact that it's completely flexible. You can seamlessly switch to an Audio Call from a Video Call, or Note. Likewise, your friend can also change the form of communication on the fly.
Another welcome addition is the ability to send multiple images, including those from your camera roll. You can even send them while you're in the middle of an Audio Call.
Lastly, SnapChat introduced Auto-Advance Stories, which is self-explanatory. Now when you finish a Story, the next one will begin automatically. You can swipe to skip ahead or pull down to exit.
With all of these changes, you're probably wondering about privacy. We have good news here as well. Shapchat's new privacy center appears to be following the same guidelines as before. This means that snaps are only temporarily saved when submitted to Live stories, and everything else is deleted.