Last August, Facebook launched Instagram Stories in an attempt to rival Snapchat. In October, they brought those same features to Messenger, testing a product called Messenger Day with users in Australia. Now it’s time for WhatsApp to receive the cloning treatment, with WhatsApp Status.
WhatsApp status works in a very similar way to Snapchat, Instagram Stories, Facebook Day, etc. Users can take photos, add captions and stickers, and share them to their contacts for 24 hours.
WhatsApp Status maintains the same end-to-end encryption that occurs when chatting on the app, so status updates are protected from prying eyes.
Many are keeping a close eye on Facebook’s copycat behavior. The Guardian has tallied a massive 17 counts of imitation, including other in-app like “direct photos and videos” and five different AR camera lens implementations.
Miranda Kerr, fiancé of Snapchat mastermind Evan Spiegel, told The Times that she “cannot STAND Facebook.”
“Can they not be innovative? Do they have to steal all of my partner’s ideas?” Kerr asked. “When you directly copy someone, that’s not innovation.”
Even though Snapchat did it all first, the company shouldn’t take lightly to Facebook’s global market power, where WhatsApp has over 1 billion monthly active users – primarily outside of the North America region. Instagram Stories had 150 million daily users in January, compared to Snapchat’s 161 million in Q4 2016.
Snapchat is busy preparing their IPO this week, which is expected to value the company at around $25 billion.