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When developers make sweeping changes to apps or websites, you’ll almost definitely hear about it on social. Just ask Facebook during its news feed-tinkering years, or more recently the team behind Instagram’s colourful icon refresh.
The latest in the long line of companies pissing off their users in this vein is Snapchat.
Back in December 2017, Snap CEO Evan Spiegel suggested a notable tweak to the app’s UI was forthcoming, as a response to users lamenting Snapchat’s confusing layout.
“There is a strong likelihood that the redesign of our application will be disruptive to our business in the short term, and we don’t yet know how the behaviour of our community will change when they begin to use our updated application,” he also warned during his investor update of 2017.
Roll on 2018, and the update is here for some across the world. And the changes are indeed “disruptive”.
‘How to ruin your 2018: update your Snapchat’
The Stories section is now separate from both the friends’ chat page and the Discover page, which itself is now two swipes to the right. Overall, it still looks like Snapchat, but the mechanics required when using it have changed.
The internet is not really embracing that change either.
On Reddit’s Snapchat sub — usually reserved for “well hung” young people looking for capricious love — users are taking a break from flirting to slate Snap’s “absolutely terrible” effort.
“No order to it,” posted one Reddit user, “the stories are randomly mixed in with the people I actually snap. It’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen, deadset.”
“My immediate reaction was ‘what the fuck is this shit’,” commented another on the post.
“Snapchat is either very out of touch with its users or… No. No, that’s all I can come up with,” determined another. “I can normally tolerate irksome changes to my fave apps, but this one seems bad enough that I’ve ended up here.”
Similar sentiment was shared on Twitter.
how i feel trying to use the new snapchat update pic.twitter.com/fvwI5a8h4A
— Stef Tascione (@StefTascione) January 10, 2018
“How to ruin your 2018: update your snapchat,” tweeted one user.
How to ruin your 2018: update your snapchat
— Ashley Sorochan (@asorochaan) January 3, 2018
“The new snapchat update is DISGUSTING,” slammed another.
okay so for me at least, snapchat has had a complete rework in an update and honestly it’s disgusting. it’s so weird to use and I don’t know why it’s been changed (this picture is the screen for chats and viewing stories? wtf) pic.twitter.com/Ak6F2Pchyr
— yin moongi [D-5] (@apwftbts) January 9, 2018
Some are resorting to more extreme measures, like deleting the app from their devices.
— Katie (@KTsimcik) January 10, 2018
This isn’t great news for Snapchat, an app that’s fighting for space in an shrinking market segment.
The company’s user base grew by just five million users to 178-million at the last count. Its biggest rival, Instagram, is pushing close to a billion users, with more than a quarter million now using its Snapchat clone, Stories.
While the update was a bid to attract fresh users to the social messaging service, it may have inadvertently alienated its current, loyal user base. And that’s not something the floundering company can afford to do.
Feature image: Memeburn