Snapchat has launched its first in-app purchases, offering users the chance to buy the ability to replay already-seen pictures and videos.
The new feature, which is only available in the US for the time being, offers “replays” in packs of three for $0.99. Without them, users can only view any given picture or video once, and get one additional replay for free each day.
The offer is the latest move away from the idea of “ephemeral messaging” which once lay at Snapchat’s core. Initially, the draw was that users could send a message just once, safe in the knowledge that once it was viewed, it could never be viewed again. Replays, introduced in 2013, chipped away at part of that, offering the ability to view one message a day a second time; so too did the introduction, in October that year, of Snapchat Stories, which lets Snapchatters post pictures and video on the app which is infinitely replayable for 24 hours after they’re published.
Snapchat said: “We’ve provided one replay per Snapchatter per day, sometimes frustrating the millions of Snapchatters who receive many daily Snaps deserving of a replay. But then we realized — a replay is like a compliment! So why stop at just one?”