Snapchat might be working on implementing new features that match those in other popular chat services, turning Snapchat into more than an ephemeral messaging app.
According to leaked screenshots from developers looking into a new chat interface called ChatV2 in the Snapchat update 9.21.10 for Android, audio and video calling and new stickers for messages may be coming to Snapchat soon, putting the app on more equal footing with Messenger.
Currently, video chatting within Snapchat is a bit of an awkward experience, and requires both people to be in the same chat within Snapchat concurrently. Though the leaked screenshots don't show whether you must remain within the Snapchat app to talk to your friends, changing the video calling experience even slightly would be an improvement.
"The chat-presence alert has been changed from showing a blue botton [sic] to showing a smiley face, which turns into a blue dot. Also, when someone is listening to you a blue text comes up saying that 'XYZ is listening/watching,'" the developers wrote. The discovery was made by the team at Snapprefs, a framework that lets people modify apps.
With video and audio calling, Snapchat would be taking on already popular services like FaceTime, Messenger, and Skype, and continuing to devolve from its roots as simply a disappearing messages app.
With more new features, Snapchat could also figure out new revenue models. Its efforts to make money—including the Snapchat Lens Store—have failed so far. Messaging app Line has successfully monetized stickers in its app, with sticker creators making $75 million in one year.
Snapchat declined to comment on the alleged leaked screenshots.