Snapchat Joins Online Video Battle Amid Recent Hack Issue

Snapchat is the new contender in the online-video battle, joining YouTube and Facebook. The new online-video powerhouse has users who watch 8 billion videos daily, according to a statement made by the company’s CEO Evan Spiegel, on Monday, to investors at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media, and Telecom Conference.

Snapchat Joins Online Video Battle Amid Recent Hack Issue

Spiegel told the audience in his first keynote presentation before public-market investors that users spend 25 to 30 minutes on Snapchat every day. He helped bankers to understand the growth of the app as it builds out an ads business. With young people as the majority users, Snapchat’s appeal lies with those who are addicted to their smartphones. In the U.S., 41 percent of people aged 18 to 34 use Spiegel’s app daily.

Spiegel told investors about the app’s fast growth and that it is loved by the young people, according to Bloomberg. He said the number of videos viewed on the app is five times more than at this time of year in 2015. With 8 billion daily video views on the app, Snapchat is now at par with Facebook, which claimed to have reached the 8 billion mark in November. YouTube claimed that billions of views are achieved by its users only.

While Snapchat does not release user metrics, reportedly, the company has over 100 million active users every day. Facebook counts 1.04 billion active users daily. According to Business Insider, this means that Snapchat users are watching more videos than Facebook users. Furthermore, to watch a video on Snapchat users are required to tap on the video while Facebook auto plays the videos on its news feed, and if they continue to play for more than three seconds, it will be considered “viewed.”

The video view fight is not just about bragging rights, but video advertising which budgets billions of dollars as adverts are shifting from TV to online. Snapchat has a deal with Viacom to help sell ads as its sales team is small. Advertisers have to follow several rules, for example, the company only accepts vertical video clips. The firm is finding ways for marketing to easily track and buy ads. It said TV ratings tracker Nielsen Holdings will give the count of standard audience for ads on Snapchat.

Amid the revelation of its growth by Spiegel, Snapchat has also been recently hacked. Though their servers remain safe, its staff member accidentally exposed the company’s payroll data, CDA News reported.

Snapchat has been a firm “that takes privacy and security seriously”, but one of its staff fell for a scam and mistakenly considered a fake email as an official one. “The good news is that our servers were not breached, and our users’ data was totally unaffected by this,” said the company’s blog post. “The bad news is that a number of our employees have now had their identity compromised.” As Snapchat has been “impossibly sorry,” it offers the affected employees free monitoring and identity-theft insurance.

By Abbey Vannelli

Photo Courtesy Snapchat

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