It seems that Facebook was not hampered by its unsuccessful attempt at acquiring Snapchat (reportedly for a billion dollar sum), and is now going it alone by building its own ephemeral video messaging app.
The social network’s new app dubbed ‘Slingshot’ will likely be a standalone release – with no connection to Facebook Messenger – according to the Financial Times.
Slingshot will work by allowing users to tap or hold a friend’s profile picture to send a photo or short video clip, which can be viewed only once.
This isn’t the first time Facebook has attempted to ape Snapchat. In 2012, it released Poke which let people send messages that expire in a fixed number of seconds. Poke was abandoned about two weeks ago.
Slingshot sounds like a more visual app, however, and will add to Facebook’s growing roster of messaging apps which include the aforementioned Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp.
It’s not hard to see Snapchat’s appeal to Facebook, a recent study showed that it is now the leading third-party messaging platform by volume in North America, even surpassing WhatsApp. It has also been growing its presence in Europe.
Facebook has yet to confirm the news.