Snapchat in principle is a very simple tool to use and one that most people can pick up and have a go with without needing too much technological know-how. However, the big update that recently rolled out has introduced a whole slew of new features and while this is great for expanding the tool’s capabilities, it also makes things a little more confusing if you’re getting started for the first time.
IN this post, we will assume that you have never used Snapchat before and will go over all the features you need to become a pro – whether for marketing or just for a bit of fun!
The first time you ever use Snapchat, you will be invited to sign up as tends to be the case with most social networks and most online tools in general. You may notice that this page has had something of an overhaul if you’ve been here before – it now features a cool silhouette of you in the background. The insinuation here is clear – Snapchat is about you!
When you first boot up Snapchat, you will be greeted immediately with a shot of your own face. This can be startling or enjoyable depending on your level of Narcissism. Now you can simply tap the button (the round one in the middle at the bottom) in order to take a photo, or hold it in order to record a short amount of video. Snapchat limits the length of videos to just 10 seconds. There is a ‘hack’ you can use that will let you record longer but you can’t send those messages – so really this isn’t a particularly useful move!
Other basic features include the ability to reverse the camera (so that you can record facing outwards instead of using the selfie-camera) and of course the ability to send your videos and photos to your contacts. You can also annotate your pictures and these sorts of options introduce themselves as soon as you finish recording/have taken your photo.
How to Use Lenses
Lenses are also known as filters and essentially allow you to make your photos and videos much more entertaining. These change daily and include a range of effects to make you look googly eyed, to turn you into a bandit, or even to make you into a dog (or Caesar??).
To use these, you simply tap and then hold on your own face, at which point you should see a mesh appear. You can then see the lens applied in real-time and choose to take a photo or film with it. Swiping along the bottom will allow you to see some of the other lenses – including the amazing live face swap for two people!
Other New Features
Another cool new way to communicate via Snapchat is through video calling. There was similar functionality in the old version but this new update makes it much more user friendly. Just hit the camera button when your contact is in the chat window and you’re ready to go! You can also chat via a small circle rather than a full screen.