THE VERDICT: Instagram vs. Snapchat, Which is it for You?

April 25, 2018 Linkage Interns

Before, Snapchat and Instagram worked together to revolutionize the social media world. But when Instagram decided it needed to borrow the story feature of Snapchat, the friendly rivalry between the two apps turned into an all-out war. And in a world where every minute counts, attractive app features are not the only things a user considers. Users also need to think about convenience, reach, content, entertainment value and what they get out of the app.

So let’s compare these two social media giants and see which one serves the bigger slice of cake to its users.

Stories

It all begins with the Stories. The only notable difference that Instagram and Snapchat have with their Stories now is that Snapchat has combined their stories with the direct messages. For the details, Snapchat still has more quirky and fun stickers and lens to entertain yourself. Snapchat also has the augmented reality feature where you can dance with a hotdog on your story. And for Snapchat, stories won’t play automatically. You can choose to take the risk to view the next story or not.

On the other hand, Instagram has more variety on how you can manage the style of your clip. You can have your story on rewind, boomerang, or superzoom. You can also take a video hands-free. Instagram also continues to expand the real-time reaction feature through the live Insta stories. It’s not yet as efficient as a group video chat, however, it’s as thrilling as one.

Discover

On Instagram, the more specific your tastes get, the more specific the Discover page also gets. And ever since Instagram added the “follow hashtag feature,” the Discover page has been spilling onto the feed. Since you followed a hashtag, a plethora of users under that hashtag is now featured on your feed. And ever since Instagram launched its new algorithm, these new follows just might overshadow your friends or the people you really care about on your feed.

Snapchat, on the other hand, keeps the walls up and tight. Friends and stranger stories are strictly kept apart. This feature comes handy when you decide you want a break from the faces you see almost every single day of your life. This is also the only place where you can judge a Snapchat users content. Unlike on Instagram where you have user profiles that don’t get wiped after 24 hours, Snapchat’s discover page only offers the clips those users have uploaded for the day.

Direct Messaging

Both Snapchat and Instagram are frequently updating their direct messaging features. However, it’s Snapchat’s DMs that’s catching up with other chat apps like Messenger. From disappearing messages, Snapchat has evolved into having audio and video calls. In addition to that, the company has allowed simultaneous video chatting and sending images. And let’s not forget the quirky stickers that the younger users of Snapchat so love to use.

On the other hand, Instagram takes the ‘direct’ in “direct messaging” so seriously on how to send posts or stories to others. However, the video and audio functions are already incorporated into its Stories feature. Unlike Snapchat, Instagram doesn’t keep its messaging features all in one neat place. However, some social media users might actually prefer this kind of neat separation.

Archives / Memories / Collections

On this aspect, it seems that Snapchat and Instagram is a little bit on par with each other. Instagram has Collections and Archives while Snapchat has Memories. Here’s where they go different ways though. Snapchat is all about personal stuff. So, you can only save your own snaps and photos or clips from their own galleries. Snapchat has also added an extra security feature called “My Eyes Only.” It’s basically a protected version of Memories.

Though Instagram also doesn’t let you store other people’s stories, it allows you to store posts from everybody. The Insta Collections is all about other people’s things that you want to keep seeing without the benefit of stalking them over and over. Archives, on the other hand, is the personal storage for Instagram users. It’s the equivalent of Snapchat’s “My Eyes Only.”

Advertisements

Among the two, Instagram is obviously leading with how it incorporates businesses into the platform. Instagram has made a special niche for business profiles, and special features were also made for them. Businesses can truly maximize all promotional efforts on Instagram. And users aren’t even complaining. It’s all part of the Insta life.

Snapchat isn’t big on advertisements. Though some companies try, it’s not necessarily fully appreciated on Snapchat. Unlike Instagram where business has a comfortable place on the platform, advertisements on Snapchat is something you want to skip altogether. As of now, ads aren’t cohesive with the nature of the app.

So Is It Instagram or Snapchat?

Overall, Instagram has managed to mold its entire platform for the type of modern day life that people so consciously live in. And that’s why it wins this round. Snapchat has tried to catch up but, Instagram has already dominated with a cohesive, convenient and entertaining app for everyone to enjoy. Regarding convenience, both apps have their own fans. However, the way that Instagram has neat boundaries between features like stories and DMs make the app simpler to navigate. Instagram also has a wider reach that is open to all. On Instagram, you can check out profiles before you follow a person.

Snapchat is limited to that option. And, because of the Instagram feed, you have more access to all sorts of media-related items from all over the world all in one place. On Instagram, you have more opportunities to connect with strangers without the pressure of giving up every piece of your identity. Regarding entertainment value, Snaps are fun and all but, the fun of it can easily fade. Instagram gives you more options than just snaps. It’s like the legos you loved to keep rebuilding over and over again into different bizarre stuff when you were a kid. Instagram gives you that kind of freedom. It’s an all-around app that gives you a full package to take away. — Liezel Stephanie Lawagan, SLU

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