Is Snapchat only a Camera Company?

With millions of users sharing stories, videos, images, ads and a lot more around the world, Snapchat is taken as a camera company and not a Social Networking platform by its Chief Executive Officer, Evan Spiegel, who described Snapchat as a camera company in a media statement during a recent event.

“We take Snapchat as more of a camera company, so you open the app and what it introduces you at first is the camera itself,” says Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snapchat, at Columbia University’s Startup Columbia event.

Speaking at the event, Spiegel ran through a number of the features of the platform that now has a global presence with more than 10 billion video views.

Positioning Snapchat as a camera company is fascinating. This describes Snapchat as a camera company first and a then a place where millions of people share their images, videos and more in the form stories. As a camera company, possibilities for people to make content to post on stories is incredible on Snapchat, and it can also help welcome partners in media to share content.

“Stories blew us away,” was the first expression of the CEO when asked for the most surprising uses of Snapchat. “What was envisioned at the time as an ephemeral profile - this is who I am right now.”

At Snapchat, story sharing is not limited to entertainment only. Spiegel mentioned an account where a person gives weather report daily. The CEO finds it exciting to notice the evolution of stories into more of a broadcasting platform away from just a profile based concept where it started.

It’s not only that the Snapchat opens to the camera, but also offers chat to the left and stories to the right of the camera. When asked about how Snapchat differentiates to communication or social networking products, Spiegel mentioned “What’s best about it is that it sits in the middle, it opens to the camera. Content feeds social networking, similar to the communication. And, when people choose this path to taking snap and adding it to their Stories, both these businesses are fed.”

Other features like stickers, and lenses etc. are further extensions of the original thesis of Snapchat as a photographic communication tool. “Now you can put the way you feel, but that’s just the beginning of some fun and creative tools for us,” he said.