Snapchat has evolved from being an app with a handful of naughty uses to a social media platform where you can both broadcast your life and watch content from a wide range of sources.
The messaging app’s ability to let you control the privacy of the pictures and videos you send is integral to its popularity.
Recent updates to the app allow users to swap faces, send stickers, voice memos and the GIF-like notes, as well as place voice and video calls.
Snapchat has become so popular and fast that there are more than 150 million active users watching 10 billion videos per day. Brands such as BuzzFeed, the ESPN, National Geographic and People magazine have made their way to Snapchat, giving fans an inside look at what is going on behind the scenes.
Here is how to sign up, get started snapping out photos and videos and become a Snapchat expert.
How to get started with Snapchat
- Install the Snapchat app
Fire up the App Store or Google Play and install it. Kick your feet up while the app transfers over.
- Sign up for an account
Since you can’t just use an existing Facebook/Google/Your Favourite Social Network account to log your way into the service, you’ll need new credentials. Tap Sign Up. You’ll be asked your email address, password and your birthday. Tap Sign Up.
- Pick a username
Select a “unique identifier” for your account that cannot be changed once it’s set. Your friends can use this to find you on the service, and the username will appear underneath your real name in their Snapchat contact list.
- Friend up
Snapchat will ask you if it can tap into your phone’s contacts list. Unless you have a burning desire to add friends manually, we recommend you grant Snapchat this permission so you can commence friend-adding.
iOS users will also be asked to enter in their mobile numbers for easier searching; fret not, Android fans, for you can add this information later – so long as the text-based verification goes smoothly for you.
Once Snapchat comes back with a list of your contacts that it has identified as users of the service, you can add them as friends by clicking the large person-with-a-plus button to the right of their names. If you want to remove contacts (or block them) later, just long-press on their names until the secondary menu pops up on your screen.