Snapchat has not taken root in Kenya, but the mobile video messaging application is big in other parts of the world, especially the US. By latest estimates, about 60% of American youths are active users.
Basically it works like this: a user takes a photo or records a video (snaps), and send them to a controlled list of recipients. Users set a time limit for how long recipients can view their Snaps (1 – 10 seconds), after which they disappear from the recipient’s device and are deleted from Snapchat’s servers.
The application has recently been adding new functionalities. Last year, it added the ‘Live’ section, which lets users attending a specific live event to submit pictures and videos through the app to a curated collection or Story.
This has expanded from events to covering cities. They are now picking cities to feature, and users from that city (determined by GPS) send videos or pictures which are seen by the whole of the world.
It’s something like Twitter’s trending topics, only that instead of showing you the trending topics from your city or country, the whole world sees the same thing.
Snapchat is handpicking the cities, and you’ll be surprised how many of its loyal users are waiting for their city to be featured. Yesterday was Nairobi’s turn (first in Africa).
Well, if you’ve not downloaded Snapchat yet, head straight to play store, or the Apple app store and get it. You may still catch on the #NairobiLife story happening there, and you’ll be sure to find the likes of Nick Mutuma, some white guy making out with a giraffe, and a group of Kenyans singing Jambo Bwana and Hakuna Matata.
In the meantime, some Americans are pissed because Snapchat team decided to feature Nairobi before their cities. Some of them are actually surprised we have iPhones and electricity.
Check out these Tweets.