Both of them are shining Titans in media sharing social media space. Instagram is backed by Facebook (When Facebook bought Instagram for $1 Billion). Snapchat is backed by Snapchat Inc.
Instagram is already very famous and people love it too, but Snapchat has also gained massive popularity specially among Youngsters. For the uninitiated, prime feature of Snapchat is that the image or video that a user uploads has a life span of 24 hours. After 24 hours, images are automatically deleted. Instagram’s, before the new update, prime feature was sharing images and videos on Social Media space and they remain there until the user decides to delete them.
As a marketing perspective, Instagram is a much better option but not Snapchat. By statistics, in 2016, Snapchat had 10 billion daily video views! Obviously Instagram was threatened by Snapchat. They looked into the age demographic, youngsters aged between 15 to 24 are using Snapchat heavily and their Instagram usage is significantly dropped. The decline started in 2015. Instagram sprang into action and a new update was launched on August 2, 2016.
This new update is named as ‘Instagram Stories’. Stories update is nothing but a Carbon copy of Snapchat. Here also, the images or videos being uploaded by the user will disappear after 24 hours. Kevin Systrom , CEO and co-founder of Instagram in his latest interview clearly accepted that this feature is directly taken from the books of Snapchat.
A primary question arises, can Instagram get away with blatantly copying Snapchat? Intellectual Property lawyer, Jeremy Harris, clarified this question. He said that Snapchat will not have a case against Instagram. A case can only be made when it is proved that Instagram has copied the source code of Snapchat. This, I highly doubt.
According to Arti Rai, a Duke law professor, copyright and trademark laws do not cover adoption of a feature till the interface of both apps is different.
People started moving towards Snapchat because of this unique feature, but now that Instagram Stories is launched, will it attract more youngsters? According to me, yes it might because people know Instagram and they use it. If they find that there exists a same feature for which they installed a separate app (keeping in mind the size of Snapchat app), they might tend to shift back to Instagram. At the end of the day, it’s the User experience which will decide the fate of Instagram Stories.
Sooner or Later Instagram had to do this. Now that Instagram has copied the entire concept as an add on feature, let us see how the market dynamics changes and will the wind move in favour of Instagram or people will stay on Snapchat. Only the time will tell.
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