New Snapchat replace to let customers share public 'Tales' outdoors the app

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Starting Wednesday, select Snapchat users will be able to access a new feature to share some of the Stories - video, image and text posts - on the web, for people who don't have the messaging and media app. At least that appears to be Snapchat's hope, in the same way that Twitter has hoped that people would see tweets embedded on publishers' sites and opt to sign up for Twitter to see more of them.

Snap CEO Evan Spiegel explained what's coming in a video made late previous year; expect to see some fairly big changes pretty soon.

Our Stories are the collaborative, crowdsourced variety of Stories that Snap launched back in 2014 and let users publicly contribute snaps to a shared group that anyone on the app can view.

With the news, Snapchat is abandoning one of the features that made it both distinctive and frequently frustrating for brands: its insularity. Our Stories and Search Stories that you share will only be viewable for 30 days with the link, and Official Stories will expire after just 24 hours. However, being able to share Stories outside of the app could also pique the interest of those who never downloaded it or who have been put off by a UX that's proved confusing to newcomers in the past. You can find Our Stories by swiping left to the Discover screen and tapping on the Our Story you'd like to watch, or by using search. Further, these links will then be redirected and opened through a media player that will be hosted on Snap's website.

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To share a Story, you'll press and hold on tiles in Discover.

Earlier this week, Instagram introduced GIF stickers, which you can add to photo and video Stories.

It not only goes some way to address Snapchat's biggest issue - increasing reach beyond its 178-million users - but it creates a possible replacement for much missed app, Vine. If finding your favourite Snapchat filter is the worst thing that happens to you today, it has been a good day.

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