How To... Snapchat

almost 8 years ago from , Student \ Weird individual / Brand designer

So google's 2015 top search results are in and what i thought was funny is the most trending question in the "How To..." section is how to use the new snapchat update (that 'lenses' thing your friends keep sending). I hope the Snapchat team learns from this and make the User experience for new features better in next updates.

If you wanna see all the top searches here you go https://www.google.com/trends/topcharts#date=2015

Edit: So everybody seems to be at the same level. Because snapchat has this "hidden" feature people feel rewarded when they find it, just like with the Fedex logo were you see the arrow for the first time you feel like you have found a treasure.


  • Vincent MillikenVincent Milliken, almost 8 years ago

    Definitely a feature that anyone over 28 can't use it.

    18 points
  • Simon KoelewijnSimon Koelewijn, almost 8 years ago

    The usability of Snapchat always boggled my mind as well, until I realised it might be the reason it's so popular among younger users. Because it's less obvious/intuitive to use it remains to this day a platform mostly used by teenagers which might add to the "attractiveness"of the service to that specific group. Your parents aren't on Snapchat. They won't put in the effort to understand how it works.

    As far as the lenses feature goes... Whether intentional or not, I think because of it's poor usability/discoverability it got extremely popular in a short time. I have a younger sister and some younger nieces (I'm 27, so far too old for Snapchat on average), and I send them a snap with one of the new lenses the day it came out. Neither of them knew how to do it but they were very eager to learn how. I can imagine it got people to talk about the feature a lot and try it together at schools and other places.

    7 points
  • Tom Good, almost 8 years ago

    I personally love the lenses feature, when I first heard of the 'secret feature' I was exciting to try it. Lack of discoverability made this feel like a special feature that you have to be 'in the know' to use. The reaction I first got when I sent a snap using a lens was great "How did you do that?!", and from that feedback the experience became more interesting. These days the changing content, with specific lack of notification keeps me coming back to find out whats new.

    Not a fan of the freemium implementation tho...

    As the feature is not required for the main purpose of the app (you can send snaps either way) I don't mind the fact it is more hidden. A big 'USE LENSES' button would actually distract from the simplicity of the app.

    2 points
  • Ivan DjordjevicIvan Djordjevic, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

    While it might be a nice example of UX/UI Gamification, as above comments mentioned, it is not for all audiences.

    1 point
  • Sam GarsonSam Garson, almost 8 years ago

    Is it not possible that making a feature harder to find, and seeing it on all your friends phones, makes the app more desirable? And the marketing achieved by that word of mouth has been incredible, the fact that it's in this lineup says it all.

    I'd say that not every feature has to be transparently declared by the UI, context is everything friends.

    1 point
  • Rhys MerrittRhys Merritt, almost 8 years ago

    I can't help but feel that Snapchat simply aren't as concerned with this sort of usability due to their demographic. Without looking much into it, I am willing to guess that many of the kids using Snapchat are seeing their friends add these lenses, and are hardly finding it's hidden nature as a detractor. Will making these lenses more discoverable produce a net positive result for Snapchat?

    1 point
  • Bent StamnesBent Stamnes, almost 8 years ago

    So much +1. I still can't make heads or tails of how the hell Snapchat is supposed to work. Seriously - everything you do does the opposite of what you expect.

    1 point
  • Dan DiGangiDan DiGangi, almost 8 years ago

    +100 to all the comments about the older generation using it significantly less. I use it at 27 but still have a hard time finding much value in it for me personally.

    0 points
  • Josué Gutiérrez Valenciano, almost 8 years ago

    JA! Bunch of oldies here that can't use Snapchat because is poor designed. /s I have a feeling that this can become a trend in apps in the near future... Poor UX, complicated apps making their way to success due teenagers...

    0 points
    • Bent StamnesBent Stamnes, almost 8 years ago

      If not a trend, it's actually a deliberate choice sometimes. The "ugly UI"-approach is shown to get higher degrees of adoption because it's "friendly" and "not scary". It just so happens that it's often used exactly by the type of applications (like Snapchat) that could perhaps (from a user's perspective) benefit from being easy to use (not deal to not know if you just shared a "personal" image with your significant other or your entire contact list, for example :)

      Making something deliberately confusing seems, unfortunately, to happen more and more.

      0 points
  • Andrew Parker, almost 8 years ago

    It's easy... you just snapchat.

    0 points
  • Jack HallahanJack Hallahan, almost 8 years ago

    I have a bit of a theory that the difficult and unintuitive UX is a key part of Snapchat's product and brand strategy. They don't want to become Facebook, which young people no longer see as 'cool' because their mums are on it.

    I thought the same about Ello, but the strategy clearly didn't work for them.

    0 points
  • Brian HintonBrian Hinton, almost 8 years ago

    I just find the app annoying, and I don't understand the popularity of an app with such a poor UX. I get a video from a friend...and I'm watching it laughing. I want to show a family member, and it doesn't load the video...then loads it and of course won't play it again because of the limitations.

    0 points
    • Kyle ConradKyle Conrad, almost 8 years ago

      That's not "poor UX" that is literally the entire point of the app.

      3 points
      • Brian HintonBrian Hinton, almost 8 years ago

        You didn't understand, or I didn't explain it properly. The second allowed time it didn't fully load the video properly...skipping occurred, and I was unable to view it the second time. And that happens all the time. Some sort of playback error should be realized allowing the playback to occur properly.

        0 points
  • Erik Friberg, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

    Huh I've been thinking about this too. But because of snapchat I've actually started to see usability as something more for the elderly generation or for simple productivity apps. I mean it's not always good to do what everybody else is doing. I wouldn't be surprised if these "hidden features" and unusual interactivity patterns actually is what makes snapchat so alluring. I know I enjoy it and that took me by surprise the first time.

    0 points