Facebook tests Snapchat Stories clone for Messenger

Facebook Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook is mimicking one of Snapchat's most popular features, Snapchat Stories, in its Messenger chat app. The new feature, called Messenger Day, launched exclusively in Poland today.

Snapchat Stories, for the unfamiliar, is a feature that lets users share photos, videos and drawings in a timeline that disappears after 24 hours. Messenger Day works almost exactly like Snapchat Stories, according to TechCrunch.

Where Messenger Day differs from Snapchat Stories and, for that matter, Instagram Stories, is how it prompts users to use the feature. At the top of the chat list are options to quickly share how you're feeling, what you're doing and more. This makes it easier to share something quickly with all of your friends instead of managing a curated friends list.

Facebook Messenger Day screenshots

Image credit: TechCrunch

"We know that people come to Messenger to share everyday moments with friends and family," said a Facebook spokesperson speaking with TechCrunch. "In Poland we are running a small test of new ways for people to share those updates visually."

It's unclear whether Messenger Day will be available in other countries, though success in Poland may mean the feature could be released more widely.

This isn't the first time Facebook has copied Snapchat. The social network's photo sharing app, Instagram, aped Snapchat Stories by releasing Instagram Stories in August.

A smart strategy

According to TechCrunch, Facebook may have introduced Messenger Day to get users hooked on its Messenger app in hopes of preventing them from leaving to use Snapchat Stories. Facebook also has another chat app with 1 billion active users: WhatsApp. In order to keep people using its apps, Facebook has to bring popular features from competing platforms into its own.

It's also smart of Facebook to put a story feature in Messenger because its chat app is more intimate than its social network. By having Messenger Day inside a chat app, users don't have to worry about sharing the highest quality photos or videos on their Facebook wall.

Over the years, the social network has evolved into a place where users only share curated highlights about their lives instead of casually sharing thoughts and activities, something Snapchat excels at.

Facebook Messenger currently has over 1 billion active users, compared to Snapchat's 150 million. Using Messenger's immense reach, Messenger Day could prove to be a popular feature.

Lewis Leong
Lewis Leong is a freelance writer for TechRadar. He has an unhealthy obsession with headphones and can identify cars simply by listening to their exhaust notes.