Snapchat Just Added a Feature That Works a Lot Like Instagram’s Boomerang

Who is copying who now?

The popular messaging app took a page out of a competitor's playbook.
Headshot of Christopher Heine

Snapchat users can now turn their videos into looping, GIF-like clips and share them with friends. Industry observers noted the similarity to Instagram’s two-year-old Boomerang feature, chiefly because there’s been so much buzz around Instagram consistently copying Snapchat in recent months.

In a blog post today, Snap detailed how the looping videos, which can be up to 10 seconds long, will stay on the phone screen until the viewer taps through it for other content. The videos, generally called Snaps, can be posted in the Stories section or delivered to users’ friends as direct messages.

“After your friend finishes viewing the Snap and taps to close it, it will delete as usual,” the company stated. “There’s also a new Loop tool for videos so you can decide if your Snap plays once or loops until your friend is ready to tap to the next Snap.”

That’s evidently not the only change to its app, which has 160 million daily users. Per MarketingLand, they can now also set photos to stay on a friend’s smartphone screen indefinitely, forcing him or her to swipe through the image. The publisher also noted that Snapchat implemented a way to edit images in a Photoshop-style fashion, with the ability to erase parts of a picture.

@Chris_Heine Christopher Heine is a New York-based editor and writer.