Snapchat Gets New, ‘Redesigned’ Android App


Snap Inc. has been well known for meting out step-motherly treatment to its Android app for a long time now. Any Android user can attest to the fact that Snapchat's Android app was garbage compared to its iOS counterpart. It is laggy, unresponsive, crashes a lot and lacks a lot of features. Despite numerous updates to 'fix' the issues, they persisted. As a result, the company lost 2 million users in Q3 2018, of which a significant chunk was Android users. The company then promised to create a new Android app from the ground up. It looks like the app is more or less complete, judging by Snap Inc's latest Tweet.

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The new app should retain the existing UI and add in some missing features such as Snapchat Charms that were previously exclusive to the iOS variant. The Android version of Snapchat was infamous for taking a screenshot of the camera viewfinder instead of using the actual camera. As a result, you'd end up with mediocre Snaps even if you packed flagship-tier hardware. The new app is said to be designed with low-end devices in mind and will have what it takes to adapt to Android's highly segmented platform.

A Snap Inc. spokesman told Engadget on Monday that early tests of its new Android app revealed a 20 per cent reduction in the amount of time it takes to open the app. Some of the other improvements include faster loading times on Lens and Stories, smoother swiping experience, and better image quality. The official rollout isn't underway just yet, but it is expected to start soon-ish. It may be a long time before the Android app gets on par with its iOS counterpart. It will probably have been too late for Snap Inc by that point as users have migrated to other platforms such as Instagram for their daily dose of 'stories'.